INDIA Unplugged: the rise of Wi-Fi – 2
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In our last submission, we discussed how Internet has become one of our basic needs of daily life like food, water, and shelter. Increasing number of smart phones and wearable devices are one of the driving factors in the growth of Wi-Fi market; particularly, in fast developing countries such as India. Most of the Wi-Fi networks in India are majorly venue Wi-Fi focused such as airports, bus stations, railway station, hotels, shopping mall, restaurants, retail outlets, etc. Increasing trend of Telcos offering Wi-Fi networks to Enterprise businesses, educational institutes, hospitals, etc. will increase the number of hotspots in India. In order to match the average hotspots across the world, India should have at least 800,000 hotspots by 2018. Wi-Fi is currently the only network that can fulfil the vision of digital India and convert it into a reality. Increasing demand for data consumption, Wi-Fi First trends and evolving telecom networks with latest solutions from telecom enables like Sterlite tech offer Wi-Fi roaming, Wi-Fi calling, Enterprise Wi-Fi, Wi-Fi Analytics and Wi-Fi Monetization, which has led enterprise and carrier Wi-Fi players to innovative their business models as well as introduce differentiated business offerings in the market. Decreasing voice revenues and connectivity issues in mobile data has led to the birth of Wi-Fi calling which offers high quality of voice calling and seamless connectivity. Becoming an important of mobile coverage, Wi-Fi will soon replace the voice calls with Wi-Fi calling. Subscribers will be able to enjoy calls without any charges for calling. Wi-Fi First is another important solution which enables Wi-Fi based devices to automatically connect Wi-Fi services wherever network is available. Almost all the smartphones in the market currently are launched with the Wi-Fi First feature by which users will be able to enjoy seamless connectivity and Telecom operators can reduce the congestion on 3G/4G network and reduce cost of infrastructure. In spite of Wi-Fi hotspots deployed by the several operators in each country, integration between the hotspots was a major need. With the increasing awareness of connected global hotspot concept, operators are collaborating and partnering with different networks to provide Wi-Fi roaming services to subscribers. With the help of Wi-Fi roaming services, subscribers will be able to enjoy seamless Wi-Fi connectivity across the globe wherever they travel without remembering any password and authenticate based on SIM authentication. Sterlite Tech is one the leading provider of Wi-Fi roaming platform for national and international telecom operators. Converged services and IoT are major drivers in the coming years which will help in faster evolution of networks as well as increased penetration of Wi-Fi internet. Smart city, Digital villages and Bharat net are some of the major projects in India which will majorly depend on Wi-Fi platforms deployed in the country. India as a market and as a policy environment has taken the steps in right direction…what remains to be realised is the momentum to gain further.