Now commuters from Bhopal, Bhubaneshwar, Ernakulam Jn, Kacheguda, Pune, Raipur, Ranchi, Vijayawada and Vishakhapatnam train stations, which are approx more than 1.5 millions in number, will now have access to free high-speed Wi-Fi, thanks to Google.

The initiative is part of the company’s ambitious plan to deliver fast and reliable Wi-Fi connectivity to 400 biggest train stations in India. Google CEO Sundar Pichai has outlined the project in December 2015 during his trip to India, and projected that at least 100 stations will have Internet connection by the end of 2016, Tech Times reported.

Google, in partnership with Indian Railways and state-owned enterprise RailTel, installed the first free Wi-Fi at Mumbai’s Central station in January. RailTel’s fiber optic infrastructure, which currently covers 26,000 miles of railway tracks, is being utilized by Google to support Wireless Access Points at the train stations. For the time being, Internet access is limited to train stations, since access points are yet to be mounted on the trains.

India’s Internet expansion is the core of the Digital India, spearheaded by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The initiative is a long-term plan to improve the country’s digital literacy.

India is stepping up its technological campaign in line with United Nation’s 2030 Agenda for Sustainable development, which calls for a significant improvement in information and communications technology, as well as universal and affordable Internet access in developing countries by 2020.

Modi has visited the U.S. in 2015 and met with social media and technology companies such as Facebook, Google, Apple, Microsoft and Adobe to discuss possible Internet expansion projects in India.

With the second largest population in the world with 1.3 billion people, but only scores 19 percent in Internet usage rate, which is one of the lowest worldwide. However, this statistic is expected to change as more users get access to the Internet and public Wi-Fi.

More than 100 million Indians were able to use the Internet for the first time in 2015. The government predicts that this number will grow exponentially and reach beyond 400 million in 2018.

Another exciting Google project is already lined up for India. Project Loon, which uses thousands of floating balloons to beam the Internet signal up in the air, is expected to get off the ground sometime this year, Google said. The balloons can stay up in the sky for almost 100 days, offering greater coverage across the region.

Source : Tech Times