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Central Government, Connected Government

Thailand targets 200,000 free Wi-Fi Hotspots in 2012

The information and Communications Technology Ministry (MICT) will increase free Wi-Fi access points to 200,000 locations across the country by the end of this year, up from around 76,000 points.

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The expansion of up to 100,000 access points will be achieved by end of this month, said ICT Minister Gp Capt Anudith Nakornthap on August 4.

Speaking at the government’s weekly TV programme “Yingluck Government Meets the People” that 10,000 access points had been made available countrywide already.

Up to 250,000 points will be introduced by the first or second quarter of 2013. The average speed is two megabits per second, he said.

Thai citizens can search for “ICT Free Hotspot”, and register using their name and ID card numbers to obtain passwords for internet use. The government’s free Wi-Fi will be located mainly at state universities, government offices, state hospitals, police stations, post offices, airports, bus terminals, ICT learning centres, BTS Skytrain, petrol stations, and main tourist attraction.

The MICT will implement this service expansion in partnership with the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) and six major telecom operators, said ICT Minister Gp Capt Anudith Nakornthap.

“The NBTC would work more closely in supporting the government’s ICT policies,” he added.

Prior to the MICT promoting equal access to internet broadband among Thais, there were only 12 per cent of Thai citizens had access to the Internet. Currently, thirty per cent or equal to 20 million people could access the internet as private and state enterprise sectors have expanded the Internet network, according to him.

“The government targeted to increase the figure to 80 per cent in 2015,” he said, and urging

The free Wi-Fi project was key part of helping prepare infrastructure in the country for the Asean Economic Community.

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