The Department of Science and Technology is going to provide free Wi-Fi access to various public areas in the country starting in July this year.
“Kaugnay nito ng karapatan ng mamamayan sa impormasyon. Lalo na impormasyon na nanggagaling sa gobyerno. Kasi kung may free Wi-Fi, ma-access nila yung mga information na dapat iparating sa kanila,” said Edgardo Cabarrios, NTC Director.
As specified on DOST Terms of Reference document released March 7, the project will cover the following public spaces, with priority given in the order listed below, and to lower income municipalities:
- Public Plazas and Parks
- Public Primary and Secondary Central Schools
- Public Libraries
- Rural Health Units & Government Hospitals
- State Universities & Colleges
- Train Stations of the MRT and LRT systems
- Airports and Seaports
- City and Municipal Halls
- National Government Offices
Of course, “free Wi-Fi” will have its limits. One, users will be limited to speeds of up to (?) 256 kbps. Two, a fair use policy will be in place.
According to Rappler’s report, users will be set into 3 groups depending on the type of ID they have used to sign into the system, and will get a bandwidth cap equivalent to their level.
Level 1 users will get a 50MB daily cap and up to 1GB monthly, with have no assurance of consistent 256 kbps connectivity. Level 2 and level 3 users will get increasing assurances of connectivity, along with a 100 or 300 MB daily cap that has a limit of 2GB or 3GB, respectively.
So there you go. Free Wi-Fi for (almost) all. I guess this is a pressing issue for our government. What do you guys think of DOST’s free Wi-Fi project?