Reliance Jio is in a great hurry to start Wi-Fi service in state capitals and tourist locations before the commencement of pan-India 4G services.
The company has already launched Wi-Fi hotspots in Bhubaneswar, Mussoorie, Lucknow, Ahmedabad, Baroda, Surat, Kolkata and others and it is expected that more cities will join Jionet Wi-Fi league in 2-3 months.
Mussoorie has become the first hill station to provide high speed Wi-Fi service from Reliance Jio Infocomm. In Mussoorie, ‘Jionet’ High Speed Wi-Fi service will cover Mall Road, Landaur Bazar, Gunhill & Nagar Palika building. As a part of the Uttarakhand government’s initiative to convert Mussoorie into a ‘Smart City’, people and visitors of Mussoorie will be able to experience and reap the benefits of high speed wireless connectivity on smartphones and tablets.
Hazratganj, Lucknow’s iconic, 200-year old shopping district has entered the digital age with the inauguration of ‘Jionet’, a high speed Wi-Fi Internet service from Reliance Jio Infocomm.
As part of the Odisha government’s initiative to convert Bhubaneswar into a ‘Smart City’, Reliance has launched 4G high speed Wi-Fi Internet services at four locations – Orissa University of Agriculture and Technology (OUAT), Gopabandhu Chowk, Governor House Road and Surya Nagar. Reliance has deployed 27 access points across locations and 1,000 concurrent users can connect to the service at any given time.
The big question is why Reliance Jio is focusing on Wi-Fi in a big way?
First, the launch of Wi-Fi will help Jio to get feedback about high speed data services and also see how different apps like news, entertainment, payment, business, healthcare and education perform in different locations and at different speeds. The users’ feedback on the overall experience and network will help in improving and fine tuning 4G services before its formal launch.
Second, BSNL is moving at a fast speed on the Wi-Fi front. The company has already installed more than 300 hotspots in 25 cities and plans are to reach more than 1,000 hotspots in FY 2015-16. Reliance has no other alternative but to counter BSNL’s Wi-Fi march by launching Jionet Wi-Fi hotspots in more number of locations pan-India.
Third, Reliance Jio plans to conserve 4G spectrum and so the focus is to have a large number of hotspots whereby people have the option to do 4G to Wi-Fi handover. RJIL has 2300 MHz spectrum across the country and 800 MHz or 1800 MHz or both in 20 out of total 22 circles in the country. RJIL plans to use this spectrum to provide seamless 4G services using LTE. All this will be helpful for Reliance Jio in the long run as subscribers can conserve on the licensed spectrum and utilize unlicensed spectrum thereby increasing minutes of usage. Once 4G LTE service commences, Wi-Fi and LTE networks will operate seamlessly with each other.
Fourth, the ministry of urban development has already announced 98 cities for smart cities. Jio plans to quickly move to the next phase as and when these cities finalize pilot or proof of concept for smart cities but for this the company has to start Wi-Fi service. So, to give a head start to smart city, Jio is launching Jionet Wi-Fi services in different cities.
Jio has deployed a network of nearly 250,000 route kilometres of fibre optics, thereby creating a future-proof digital backbone across India. Over the next 3 years, Jio will more than double this fibre footprint by deploying fibre optics in the last mile. All this gives Reliance Jio a definite advantage to deploy Wi-Fi hotspot in different locations if it plans to utilize the digital IP backbone of RJIL.
Orignal post at teleanylysis.com