Broadband India Forum President T.V. Ramachandran praised the recommendations from the Regulator on ‘Proliferation of Broadband through Public Wifi ‘announced on Thursday-9th of March and called it as a huge step towards expediting the availability of affordable and accessible broadband everywhere and to achieve the vision of Digital India.
He said and he hoped that the Department of Telecom will provide their early consent to these recommendations and pave the way for boosting broadband penetration in the country currently languishing at a lowly 18% as compared to that of mobile which is at 93%. Explaining the importance of this regulation, Mr. Ramachandran pointed out that based on Global Average of 1 hotspot for every 150 persons; India should have approx. 8 Million hotspots. However, the total number of hotspots as of 2016 based on TRAI’s own report was only 31, 500. He was confident with the implementation of these recommendations; the number of hotspots would accelerate to help bridge the huge deficit that exists.
Mr. Ramachandran went on to further state that this would lead to introduction of a number of new small time players in Wifi provisioning space who will be able to boost the broadband availability to the masses. Besides he also mentioned that due to this, there is likely to be huge explosion of backhaul requirements and TSPs are likely to hugely benefit out of this.
Mr. Ramachandran said that BIF shared the vision of TRAI to decentralize the internet service sector and open up the sector for provision of broadband services through a plethora of smaller players through the simple process of ‘ registration ‘.This will result in significant increase in broadband penetration and the uptake of broadband enabled services and applications throughout the country that will help catapult India into the top league of nations with high density of broadband users and higher average speed and capacity consumed per user.