India’s public WiFi hotspots numbers will witness 6x jump in the next 2 years from 0.3 million in 2019 to 2.1 million in 2021 thanks to the government schemes both central and state.
In 2019, Bharat Broadband Network Limited (BBNL) and Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) contributed around 88 percent of total public WiFi hotspot numbers in the country, followed by Reliance Jio, QuadGen Wireless, Smart Cities and RailTel. The overall tally of public WiFi hotspots in 2019 was 306,918 according to DigiAnalysys.
India’s Public WiFi Hotspot Numbers:
BBNL – 220,700
BSNL – 49,300
Reliance Jio – 6,500
QuadGen Wireless – 6,000
Smart Cities – 5,000
RailTel – 1,618
Vodafone Idea – 1,000
Bharti Airtel – 1,000
L&T SW&C – 800
Others* – 15,000
Total – 306,918
*Others include: MTNL, Facebook, ISPs and others
Source: DigiAnalysys 2019
Talking about Public WiFi hotspot numbers, Pravin Prashant, Director, DigiAnalysys said, “India has already achieved 306,918 WiFi hotspots and is strongly poised to achieve 2.1 million by 2021 thanks to strong push by the government through BBNL BharatNet project, RailTel through railway stations, Ministry of Urban Development through Smart Cities and MHRD (Ministry of Human Resource Department) through colleges and mobile operators and ISPs in the country.”
In the next two years, India will witness additions of around 1.25 million public WiFi hotspot in gram panchayats, 20,000 in colleges, 50,000 in smart cities, 4,791 in category B/C/D/E railway stations (of these 800 stations are situated in 115 backward districts), retail outlets and others.
Indian operators as well as OTT players will also add a significant number of public WiFi hotspot numbers in the next two years which would be useful for WiFi offload and also save lot of spectrum in a country where spectrum is a scare resource and also costly. Presently, mobile offload is around 30-40% of total mobile traffic for some operators.
Such large deployment of public WiFi hotspots in the country will definitely act as a catalyst to achieve US$1 trillion digital economy for India.
The Public WiFi Hotspot report was released during India’s biggest WiFi event – My India WiFi India Summit & Awards 2019 held at New Delhi, where it also felicitated RS Sharma, Chairman, TRAI as WiFi Leader of the Year and CSC Wi-Fi Choupal Services, BSNL, Reliance Jio, QuadGen Wireless Solutions, TCIL, Ruckus Networks, Aruba, Sterlite Technologies, L&T SW&C, Amity University, XiFi Smart Networks, UTStarcom India, D-Link India, ONEOTT iNTERTAINMENT, Maksat Technologies, LMES, Inventum Technologies and Shyam Spectra in other categories.