8-10 startups interested in TRAI Public Open Wi-Fi Pilot

TRAI’s Public Open Wi-Fi Pilot has got an overwhelming response from a number of startup companies according to TRAI.

According to industry sources, in the first five days TRAI has got enquiries from around 8-10 companies for Public Open Wi-Fi Pilot project for the nationwide Wi-Fi networks.

The companies who have shown interest for TRAI Public Open Wi-Fi pilot are hardware, software and application provider.

TRAI has invited all interested entities to be part of the pilot to establish nationwide, pay as you PDOs (Public Data Office) or public open Wi-Fi hotspots and the last date for submitting their willingness latest by July 25, 2017.

Any Indian entity having a PAN number and planning to provide one or more hotspots to public using either free or paid model can apply for the pilot. Any consumer Internet app provider providing features to manage users KYC backed profile, allow all digital payment methods and allow users to easily connect to hotspots can also apply. A hotspot hardware/software/service provider either local or global can also apply for the pilot. All interested parties can apply to TRAI latest by July 25, 2017.

Experience for a small entrepreneur to purchase, self register, set up and operate a PDO must be simple, low touch and maintenance free. Product available for consumption should begin from sachet sized of low denomination ranging from Rs. 2 to Rs. 20.

The vision of PDO pilots initiative is to establish an open architecture bound Wi-Fi Access Network Interface (WANI) such that any entity (company, proprietorship, societies and non-profits) should be easily able to set up Wi-Fi Access points anywhere in the country. Even users should be able to do one check authentication and payment and connect one more devices in a single session.

TRAI believes that by adopting an open architecture approach the emphasis is on innovation and consumer experience as the winning criteria and not deep pockets. The pilot is the first step in shaping this eco-system and ensuring that rules are established in a fair and transparent manner that encourages participation from all.

TRAI will publish WANI technology architecture for allowing multi-provider, interoperable system across the country within 3-4 days.

The objectives of the TRAI pilot are: Demonstrate unbundling of services reduces rework, speeds up development; prove that multi-provider, inter-operable, collaborative model increases the overall innovation in the system; Test the specifications in real life conditions, and suggest improvements; jointly develop a business model that fairly allocates value to each provider; fine tune the technology and finalize the specifications based on pilot; To test out integrated payment methods such as coupons (purchased using cash by user or gifted to user), credit/debit cards, net banking, e-wallets, and UPI.

As per industry estimate, India has deployed round 31,000 public Wi-Fi hotspots in India in comparison to 13 million in France and 10 million in the United States of America. The TRAI initiative will help in increasing the pace of public Wi-Fi hotspots in India and will help us to keep pace with the developing economies.

DigiAnalysys is organising My India Wi-Fi India Summit & Awards on Thursday, 24th August 2017 at The Imperial Hotel, New Delhi, India. For more info, please click the following link- www.myindiawifiindia.com

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