Railway PSU RailTel formally launched its paid wi-fi service plans on Thursday which will enable users to access high-speed internet at 4,000 railway stations across the country. RailTel already provides free wi-fi service at more than 5,950 stations in the country, and the facility can be availed by anyone with a smartphone and an active connection after an OTP-based verification. With the launch of these prepaid plans, a passenger can now use up to 30 minutes” free wi-fi per day at 1 mbps speed. But for higher speed of up to 34mbps, a user will need to choose a plan at a nominal fee.
The plans include Rs 10 for 5 GB data in a day, Rs 15 for 10 GB data in a day, Rs 20 for 10 GB data valid for five days, Rs 30 for 20 GB data valid for five days, Rs 40 for 20 GB data valid for 10 days, Rs 50 for 30 GB data valid for 10 days and Rs 70 for 60 GB data valid for 30 days.
“We did a detailed trial run of Prepaid Wi-Fi at 20 stations in Uttar Pradesh and based on the response and detailed testing, we have launched this plan at 4,000+ more stations across India. We intend to launch the prepaid plans for all the stations with our RailWire Wi-Fi this financial year,” said RailTel CMD Puneet Chawla.
The plans have been designed to offer a flexible choice to users as per their needs. A number of payment options like net banking, e-wallet, and credit cards can be used to purchase the plans online, he said. Chawla said that before COVID-19, more than three crore people were using the service monthly. Once the situation normalises and footfall at stations becomes regular, a revenue of Rs 10-15 crore annually is expected from the paid wi-fi service, he added.
Indian Railway is the largest public transporter of the nation, and railway stations are melting pots of the whole cross-section of the society. Passengers use this wi-fi facility for streaming high definition (HD) videos, downloading movies, songs, games and do their office work online. The service has tremendously benefitted railway passengers, particularly the rural population.