Recently, RailTel launched the Prime Minister Wi-Fi Access Network Interface (PM-WANI) scheme based access of its fast & free public WiFi services across 100 Indian Railways stations having 2,384 WiFi hotspots. According to a statement issued by the PSU, these railway stations are spread in 22 states and include 71 Category A1, A railway stations as well as 29 railway stations of other categories. To access this WiFi network, android based mobile application ‘Wi-DOT’ can be used at present, which is available on Google Play Store. This mobile application has been developed in coordination with C-DOT. This method of accessing WiFi through ‘mobile application’ would be in addition to the existing method of accessing WiFi at these railway stations through the conventional way of selecting RailWire Service Set Identifier.
According to the PSU, PM-WANI based access will facilitate the ease of use through one time KYC to avoid OTP based authentication, every time one tries to use WANI based Public Wi-Fi service. The WiFi network of RailTel is now spread across 6102 railway stations across the country having 17,792 WiFi hotspots, and is still growing. Later, the PSU said, PM-WANI based access of the public Wi-Fi services would be extended to all 6102 railway stations across the country where Wi-Fi facility is already available in a phased manner by the end of June 2022 (a total of 1000 railway stations by 10 June, 3000 railway stations by 20 June as well as all 6102 stations by 30 June 2022).
RailTel said PM-WANI is an ambitious program of the Department of Telecom in order to facilitate ease of use and proliferate broadband usage for the masses CDOT has designed as well as developed the framework of PM-WANI. The small shopkeepers can become Public Data Offices as the last mile access service providers and take services from PDO aggregators for internet and backend services, the PSU added.