FireFly Networks, a joint venture between India’s largest telecom operators Airtel and Vodafone, has installed WiFi services on the premises of the Supreme Court of India, the apex court informed in a notification (pdf).
“In order to overcome the difficulties being faced by the members of the Bar and other visitors to the Supreme Court in having Internet connectivity in the Supreme Court, as per directions, the matter was taken up with various service providers, including FireFly Networks Limited, for providing wi-fi services. It is hereby informed that a provision for Wi-Fi access for the members of the Bar and also for the visitors to the Supreme Court has been made in the Supreme Court and the said 24×7 service will be provided by M/s FireFly Networks Limited, with effect from April 20, 2015, 9.30 a.m,” the statement read.
At the Supreme Court, users wanting to access the Internet will get following Wifi names (SSIDs) in the zone:i) VFWiFiVoucher ii) Vodafone WiFI and iii) Airtel Hangout
It seems that the SSID with VFWiFiVoucher is the WiFi service FireFly networks will be offering. Users opting for the complimentary free service will be access the network for 20 minutes with a data limit of 100 Mb. After consuming the Complimentary Wi-Fi pack, subscriber can purchase other WiFi packs i.e. Rs 20 for 30 minutes, Rs 30 for 60 minutes and Rs. 50 for 120 minutes. “As assured by service provider, subscribers will shortly be provided with more options with daily, weekly and monthly packs,” the notification added.
The second option (Vodafone WiFi) allows Vodafone customers to use their existing 3G pack by selecting “VodafoneWiFi” SSID from the list of available networks and continue using the 3G pack allowance over the Vodafone Wi-Fi network. The Airtel Hangout option has not rolled out and Airtel subscribers will be able to use Airtel Internet packs seamlessly with in 6-8 weeks’ time using “Airtel Hangout” SSID, the notification added.
Users will have to enter their mobile number while trying to access the free WiFi and will receive a one-time password which they have to enter and will be redirected to a payment gateway where they can pay via credit and debit cards, net banking and digital wallets.
It was earlier reported that FireFly was looking to get a maximum chunk of the WiFi deployments in NDMC areas of Delhi, besides targeting other state governments’ WiFi plans. The report also added that FireFly was vying for the Delhi government’s plan to provide Delhi citizens with WiFi facilities.
FireFly Networks was incorporated in February last year and has a paid-up capital of Rs 2 crore and an authorized capital of Rs 50 crore, according to data on the registrar of companies. Its directors include Vodafone CEO Sunil Sood, Vodafone EVP for finance Suresh Bagrodia, Airtel director for consumer business Srinivasan Gopalan, Vodafone CTO Vishant Krishnakant Vora and Airtel’s director for network services Abhay Savargaonkar. Airtel had also mentioned that it has invested Rs 1 crore in FireFly networks for the quarter ended June 30 (pdf).
It’s also worth noting that Reliance Jio, a pan-India BWA licence holder, has already rolled out 4G-backed WiFi services in some parts of Kolkata, Uttar Pradesh (Varanasi) and Gujarat. In Gujarat last year, Reliance Jio had launched free Wi-Fi hotspots in eight locations at Ahmedabad and nine locations at Baroda and Surat. This was part of Gujarat Government’s e-Nagar project.
Image Source: Legaleagle86