Union Minister for Telecom and Information Technology, Mr Ravi Shankar Prasad dedicated 1000th WI-FI hot spot to the nation with the operationaliation of WI-FI facility at Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine.
As part of its drive to tap new sources of revenue while meeting aspirations of the Government, it has introduced a plan to deploy public Wi-Fi hotspots across the country covering all religious, tourist and important locations in the country.
In first phase of the plan it proposes to set up 2500 WIFI hotspots across the country.
Ravi Shankar Prasad also gave go ahead to the NGN technology designed and manufactured locally by CDOT (Centre for Development of Telematics). The initiative part of Make in India program of the Government will facilitate BSNL in accelerating deployment of NGN technology in urban and rural part of the country.
The Minister also inaugurated several Value Added Services (VAS) on NGN, namely all India IP Centrex, multimedia voice conferencing, fixed mobile convergence and prepaid version of fixed telephone.
He also started a new innovative services called Fixed Mobile Telephony(FMT) which helps customers to carry his/her fixed telephone in his/her pocket while moving around the world and able to receive and initiate outgoing calls from mobile telephone instrument.
As part of its strategy to regain financial health and popularity, BSNL has taken several initiatives recently. It includes introduction of free night calling from BSNL fixed line to any other service provider between 9PM to 7AM. BSNL has also introduced free incoming calls while roaming for BSNL mobile customers which is perhaps a first step taken by any telecom operator. BSNL has upgraded minimum speed of broadband from 512 kbps to 2mbps so that broadband customers of BSNL should have better surfing experience.
BSNL is in the process of upgrading and expanding both mobile as well as fixed telephone network. As part of this initiative BSNL is converting the existing PSTN telephone exchanges with NGN (Next Generation Network). Approximately 660 telephone exchanges have already been upgraded to NGN.
As part of Government’s initiative to modernize BSNL so as to make it relevant in the competitive environment which telecom sector is facing today. He said the Public Sector has plans to invest Rs 2000 crore for the upgradation of its network which includes adding another 21000 BTS. He said the addition would include 13000 BTS which BSNL would use for its 3G services.