Fifty-fifty though it surpassed its targets of rolling out free WiFi at railway stations, Google said Monday it was winding down its Station program globally over the yr. Google cited cheaper and more accessible mobile data, authorities initiatives to provide access to internet for everyone and the challenge of varying technical requirements and infrastructure among its partners beyond nations as the reasons to explain its decision of shutting downwards the programme, which commenced in Republic of india in 2015 and was afterwards expanded to several other countries.
Meanwhile, country-owned RailTel said it will keep to provide free WiFi at over 5,600 railway stations beyond the country. “In this partnership, Google provided the RAN and technology support and RailTel provided the physical infrastructure and cyberspace bandwidth (ISP). But going frontward, autonomously from these 415 stations, we have besides provided free WiFi in 5190+ B, C, D stations as well,” RailTel said in a statement.
In India, the Station programme was a office of Google’southward broader vision of bringing on the “side by side billion users” online.
“We launched Station in India in 2015, as a partnership between Google, Indian Railways and RailTel to bring fast, free public WiFi to over 400 of the busiest railway stations in Republic of india past mid-2020. Only we crossed that number past June 2022 and implemented Station in thousands of other locations around the country in partnership with telecommunications companies, ISPs and local authorities. Over time, partners in other countries asked for Station besides and nosotros responded accordingly,” Caesar Sengupta, VP—Payments and Next Billion Users, Google wrote in a blog-post Monday. “… we’ve fabricated the decision to gradually air current down the Station programme globally, through 2020. We are working with our partners to transition existing sites so they tin can remain useful resource for the community,” he added.
All-time of Express Premium
In add-on to India, the Station program was available in Brazil, South Africa, Nigeria, Thailand, the Philippines, United mexican states, Indonesia, and Vietnam. The first station in Bharat to go live on the programme was Mumbai Central.
“India, specifically at present has among the cheapest mobile data per GB in the globe, with mobile data prices having reduced past 95 per cent in the last 5 years, as per TRAI in 2022. Today, Indian users eat close to 10 GB of data, each month, on average. And similar to what the Indian government did, several governments and local entities have kicked off their own initiatives to provide easier, cost-constructive access to the net for everyone,” Sengupta wrote in the web log.
“… when we evaluate where we can truly make an impact in the time to come, we see greater demand and bigger opportunities in edifice products and features tailored to work better for the next billion user markets,” he added.
According to the latest available data shared by Google, Google Station had shut to eight million monthly active users across 400 stations in 2022. Notably, the data showed that the consumption was much higher in tier-Ii cities with average information consumption at around 350 MB per user.