TRAI extends deadline for feedback on public Wi-Fi

In July, TRAI released a new consultation paper that seeks to invite suggestions from all stakeholders.

Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has reportedly extended the deadline for feedback on the discussion paper on public Wi-Fi to December 9 from November 25, following stakeholders request.

In July, TRAI released a new consultation paper that seeks to invite suggestions from all stakeholders for is policy on interoperable and scalable public Wi-Fi networks.

In a statement TRAI Secretary Sudhir Gupta said, “The objective of this consultation paper is to explore whether the model can be implemented for public Wi-Fi networks to promote appropriate monetisation and business models for sustainable infrastructure deployment.”

The consultation paper issued by TRAI include technical interoperability and seamless connectivity of Wi-Fi networks, innovative payment, commercialisation and monetisation models and collaborative partnerships between various entities of the ecosystem.

In the discussion paper, TRAI sought industry comments on whether national, open Application Programme Interfaces (APIs) used in Aadhar, electronic-Know Your Customers (e-KYC) and Unified Payment Interface (UPI) could be used to create a unified authentication-cum-payments infrastructure mechanism for accessing public Wi-Fi networks.

In an attempt to provide internet connectivity across the country, TRAI is also considering reducing burden on the telecom spectrum in dense urban areas.

“I’m not looking at large companies putting up Wi-Fi. We used to have PCOs. Can we have Public Data Offices, where a grocery shop can have a Wi-Fi hotspot, where the authentication is taken care of by the back-end of the hotspot? All he has to do is keep the Wi-Fi connected to power,” RS Sharma, TRAI Chairman, said in a statement.