The Uttar Pradesh state government today launched WiFi hotspots at 74 bus stations that are spread across 66 district headquarters, reports IANS. Each user will get unlimited free usage and will need to login via TG Connect app, according to the report. There were no details on the speeds being delivered or the operators involved in providing bandwidth to the UP government. The UP govt website and the IT Policy portal of UP did not provide any details.

Note that the TG Connect app that the IANS report mentions, was launched by  Travelguru.com back in 2013 as an API for hotel partners and channel managers for exchanging hotel rates and inventory details. The company which owns the app later expanded to various categories like utility bill payments, distributing online games, or simply aggregating information of nearby restaurants, clubs, banks, ATMs, etc.

TG Connect seems to be the launch partner of UP government for its WiFi project. The app serves as an authentication agent for registering a user on to the Wi-Fi network and for notifying users of an upcoming Bus in particular bus stop/station, as seen in this demo video.  Note that TG Connect also provides audio-based advertising facilities on Mumbai Local trains and the same is being provided in an online format via the app.

Rise of state-sponsored WiFi projects

Apart from UP, several state-sponsored public WiFi initiatives were announced in the past couple of months. We have tracked down a total of 8 including UP government’s current announcement: