Facebook Launches Express WiFi In India, Partners Airtel For 20,000 WiFi Hotspots

Facebook has launched its ambitious internet connectivity program Express WiFi in India. The Express WiFi is a commercial project by the social media giant and users need to pay to access at these WiFi hotspots. At present around 700 such WiFi hotspots are rolled out across four Indian states of Uttarakhand, Gujarat, Rajasthan and Meghalaya.

Besides, Facebook has also partnered with Bharti Airtel to deploy another 20,000 hotspots across the country to provide internet connectivity.

The commercial launch as well as partnership with Airtel was announced by Munish Seth, Head of Connectivity Solutions, Facebook Asia Pacific.

“We are also pleased to announce our partnership with Bharti Airtel to launch an additional 20,000 hotspots— allowing Express Wi-Fi to reach millions more Indians who need super-fast and affordable connectivity. These hotspots will begin to be deployed over the next few months,” said Munish Seth.

The social media major has teamed up with ISPs and over 500 500 local entrepreneur retailers to launch this program commercially.

Anyone can access the Express Wi-Fi network by signing up with an Express Wi-Fi retailer and purchasing a daily, weekly or monthly data pack at a rate set by our partners. They will then be able to connect to the Express Wi-Fi hotspot, register/create an account, login and start browsing or use any app on the entire internet.

“We are delighted to be a part of this initiative to provide affordable access to high speed data to users across India, particularly in the underserved segment. We believe this will help in empowering millions of Indians by bringing them online and contribute to the Government’s Digital India vision,” said Ajai Puri, Chief Operating Officer (India & South Asia), Bharti Airtel.

Express Wi-Fi is designed to complement mobile data offerings by providing a low-cost, high bandwidth alternative for getting online and access apps, download and stream content. Our Express Wi-Fi partnerships empower local Indian entrepreneurs to start businesses to offer internet access to their town or region. They also help Indians connect to the internet easily and for an affordable rate.

“Our goal is to grow the number of Express Wi-Fi hotspots in India rapidly,” added Seth.

Seth said besides Airtel, Express Wi-Fi has been deployed in partnership with ISPs AirJaldi in Uttarakhand, LMES in Rajasthan, Tikona in Gujarat, and soon with Shaildhar in Meghalaya.

On a global level Express Wi-Fi is currently live in five countries—India, Kenya, Tanzania, Nigeria and Indonesia.

 

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