Here’s 5 Things You Need To Know About The Free WiFi Project
The Department of Information and Communications Technology and the National Telecommunications Commission along with its telco partners Globe and PLDT, is launching free their Free, High-speed WiFi Project on EDSA today, June 12, Independence Day. The project will give an estimated 500,000 daily commuters of the MRT as well as the passengers of 326,000 vehicles that ply EDSA blazing fast, internet absolutely for free. You might have a few burning questions about the project, questions that may be answered in our quick FAQ below:
What is it?
Technically, it’s called the EDSA Wi-Fi Free Public High Speed Internet, and it meshes with the promise made by President Duterte during his first State Of The Nation address to give public spaces in the Philippines fast, free internet. It falls under the National Broadband Plan of the Philippines, and builds on the DICT’s work with the two telcos in providing public spaces with free WiFi access. The public is already reaping the benefits of the DICT’s work in NAIA and a number of seaports and airports around the Philippines, and this is simply that applied over the entire stretch of EDSA.
How fast is it?
We’ve been fortunate to see firsthand the speedtest results of the new initiative in the Shaw Boulevard station last week, and all we can say is it’s really, really fast. While our other tech friends managed to get speeds of up to 100Mbps in street level, up in the actual MRT platform we saw a phone go up to 203Mbps! That’s significantly faster than our fiber connection at home, and should be enough for most people’s needs. We do hope that the speed stays that fast when there’s literally thousands of people connecting to it though.
Do I need to be at the MRT station to be able to enjoy it?
No. As it’s name suggests, the EDSA Wi-Fi Free Public High Speed Internet project will be available throughout the entire stretch of EDSA, and while both Globe and Smart are providing MRT riders access, as far as we know only Smart is providing internet access at street level. If you’re in an Uber, Grab, bus or taxi you’ll be able to enjoy the free high-speed internet to make you forget about the terrible, terrible traffic that you have to endure going to and from your office. The first stage of this service will be available beginning June 12 at all the 13 MRT platforms from North Avenue to Taft, and the continuous street level stretch of EDSA from Guadalupe to Cubao. Simply connect to SmartWiFi MRT Edsa from the list of available access points.
Is it free?
It is for the first 30 minutes. If you need more time with hi-speed internet, you can extend your session by purchasing load cards, costing Php 20 for two hours (valid for two days) and Php 50 for 10 hours (valid for 5 days). You can also top up for 30 minutes (valid for a day).
Is there a data cap?
Absolutely none. You can download whatever you want and use the service however you see fit, but we wouldn’t be surprised if the folks behind it put filters for bit torrent traffic.
That’s it friends! The DICT along with its partners launches the service today, Independence Day – if you happen to be riding along the MRT or travelling through EDSA today give it a try to see if it really works as advertised.