State-run telecom operator BSNL will invest Rs 7,000 crore in setting up wifi hotspots integrated with 3G, 4G networks across the country over the next two to three years, a top company official said.
"Wifi is an obvious choice for BSNL going forward but it alone cannot be successful. It has to be integrated with 3G, 4G network so that customer can be seamlessly transferred to wifi.
In two to three years, we will be investing Rs 7,000 crore to set up integrated wifi across the country," Chairman and Managing Director of BSNL Anupam Shrivatava said while speaking at TeleAnalysis event here.
The company has already rolled out wifi service in Varanasi and will be extending it to more tourist spots by the end of this year. "By end of this financial year, we will have 2,500 wifi hotpsots," Shrivatava said.
In addition to this, BSNL has also partnered with QuadGen Wireless for setting up wifi hotspots under a revenue share model. "BSNL is in best position to provide instant bandwidth. We will set up wifi hotspots and BSNL will provide bandwidth for it.
We are committed to set up 1,000 wifi hotspots by June and another 5,000 by end of this year," QuadGen Wireless Founder and Chairman C S Rao said. QuadGen will set up wifi hotspots in South and West zone under this partnership.
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"Telecom operators have just committed huge amount in spectrum auction. They will need time to invest in networks. With BSNL we have 18-months window of opportunity to expand wifi network," Rao said.