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Free WiFi planned in 709 Railway Stations by March 2020

The Indian Railways has planned to roll out free WiFi in 709 Railway Stations by March 2020, Rajen Gohain, Minister of State for Railways said in Parliament. This will cover all A1, A and B category stations. According to the minister, "the Wi-Fi facility is being provided at railway stations without any capital investment from Railway’s side." That basically means that Google is funding the WiFi rollout for the government. According to details shared with Parliament, WiFi is currently available in 115 railways stations, and has been commissioned in another 103 stations. A full list is available here. Note that when the project launched, Google said it was planning to cover 400 stations in total. So who'll do the rest? Note that Google is also planning to launch 200 WiFi hotspots in Pune under the Smart Cities mission. It also has Google Station, a platform for Public WiFi which allows venues and locations to partner with the company to provide high speed Internet. Here's what we know about Google's WiFi rollout with Railtel December 2016 (source) 100 station (Ooty was the 100th) 15,000 people are connected to the Internet for the first time, via these stations September 2016 (source) 52 stations 3.5 million users every month Average usage per user of 600 MB on a 30 minute free connection August 2016 (source) 19 stations 2 million users every month users are "consuming as much as 15 times the data they would otherwise in a full day on their cellular networks" June…

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Founder @ MediaNama. TED Fellow. Asia21 Fellow @ Asia Society. Co-founder SaveTheInternet.in and Internet Freedom Foundation. Advisory board @ CyberBRICS

MediaNama’s mission is to help build a digital ecosystem which is open, fair, global and competitive.

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