Taking forward the promise of providing world-class IT facilities, Telangana Government has launched the “Hyderabad City Wi-Fi Project”, also known as Hy-Fi, with over 1,000 hot-spots in the state capital.
Inaugurated by Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) Mayor Bonthu Rammohan, the ambitious project will eventually cover 3,000 hotspots in various locations of the city.
Many senior state government officials and dignitaries including Jayesh Ranjan, Principal Secretary, Department of IT, Electronics, and Communications, Government of Telangana, and Dr B Janardhan Reddy, Commissioner, GHMC were present during the launch ceremony.
Addressing the gathering on the occasion, GHMC Mayor Rammohan said that being the newest state of the country, “Telangna aspires to be the best state” in all aspects.
He said Hyderabad has been an inspiration for other cities in IT, business and living standards, and “this city will continue to adopt new technologies” for uplifting each citizen’s lifestyle.
“Hy-Fi will set another example making Hyderabad a truly connected city even on the digital front,” the Mayor added. Under the Digital Telangana umbrella, Telangana launched Hyderabad City Wi-Fi Project (Hy-Fi) pilot version during June 2015.
This pilot version witnessed the government partner with Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to provide free Wi-Fi for half-an-hour at about 100 public category locations across Hyderabad. These locations include malls, tourist spots, public offices, police stations, government schools and colleges, etc.
In last two years, the number has more than doubled to cover about 250 locations. Considering the tremendous success the pilot project has witnessed, the State Government has decided to scale up the project to cover over 3,000 locations across Hyderabad.
A separate Government Order has been, in fact, brought out to enable smooth execution of the programme for ISPs. The Government has agreed to take a two-phased approach. It is meant to complete the Wi-Fi project which is a unique example of government and industry participation for enriching community life and enhancing public safety.
Currently, over 1,000 hotspots are being installed with an assured bandwidth of 5-10 Mbps offering 30 minutes of free Wi-Fi.
Speaking at the occasion and announcing the launch of second phase of the programme, Jayesh Ranjan, Principal Secretary, Department of IT, Electronics and Communications, Govt. of Telangana said that Digital India is the future and “Telangana is marching ahead to achieve this dream.”
“Hy-Fi is another pro-people initiative where citizens will avail free Wi-Fi to do their work. Businessperson, shopkeepers, entrepreneurs, students, women and tourists will benefit from this essential service.” Dr B Janardhan Reddy, Commissioner, GHMC said Hy-Fi is another major achievement for the city with the citizens being the major benefactors of the service.
“With the high penetration of smartphones, free Wi-Fi will be a boost for the people. It will surely enhance the lifestyle of the citizens.”
Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI), the apex industry association of telecom services providers, mobile and internet companies, the technical advisor to Telangana Government in this ambitious project, was represented by Rajan S Mathews, Director General, COAI on the panel.
Mathews was joined by several leaders from the telecom industry including Venkatesh Vijayraghavan, Circle CEO – Bharti Airtel, Bala Malladi, CEO – ACT Fibernet and Sujit Sen, Circle CEO – Indus Towers.
Mathews, Director General, COAI said with successful completion of the Hy-Fi project, Hyderabad and Telangana will emerge as an example for rest of the country.
“It is a proud moment for the state and the telecom industry as well. As partners in this ambitious project, the telecom industry will partner in the timely completion of the project. This will provide high speed internet access connecting citizen with education, commerce and opportunities,” Mathews added.
“COAI represents the leading telecom and technology companies across the country and Hyderabad is the city of choice for everything IT. We look forward to working closely with government of Telangana and are proud to be consultants of the government in its endeavour for a fully connected Digital India,” he added.
The programme will also be viewed as an example of the expertise from government and industry coming together for the larger good of the massesHighlighting the significant role of the telecom industry, Venkatesh Vijayraghavan, Circle CEO – Bharti Airtel said, “Airtel has been a partner in the Government’s Digital India vision and we are delighted to support Hy-fi, the country’s largest and fastest public Wi-Fi network.
With this digital initiative, Hyderabad has further cemented its reputation as one of India’s technology capitals. Together with the Telangana Government and the industry we are committed to demonstrate endless possibilities of new digital experiences to the citizens of Hyderabad.
Another unique aspect of the programme is the participation of private players who provide the last mile or home connectivity from Information and Communication Technology (ICT).
Bangalore-based Atria Convergence Technologies has been selected for bridging the last mile gap in the project.
Bala Malladi, CEO – ACT Fibernet, while addressing the gathering said: “With the growing number of citizens moving towards digital economy, our partnership with the Telangana government will bolster the internet connectivity in Hyderabad.”
“With more than 1,000 hotspots to be installed in the coming months across the city will enable users to access high-speed internet both inside their homes and on the go throughout Hyderabad.”
Speaking about the project, Sujit Sen, Circle CEO – Indus Towers said, “We are committed to ensure a robust infrastructure for deploying this project and hope that this will act as the foundation stone for other programs driving Digital India in the state.”
The Hy-Fi project is a successful example of how the government and the industry can collaborate for a meaningful partnership together which benefits all stakeholders.