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When I was in Vietnam several years ago, I experienced FREE internet access in most public areas. They boast around 10 Mbps to 14 Mbps connection speeds. I really envied them wishing that someday the Philippines will experience the same.
Then our current president who was elected in 2016 promised to improve internet access for Filipinos. And true to his word, a better and faster internet access has now become a reality for us. Aside from that, FREE internet access in public areas can now be experienced in most urbanized cities nationwide. It all started with airports in key cities, and then just this June 2017, approximately 230,000 commuters are now benefiting from EDSA Free Wi-Fi Project in 13 Metro Rail Transit Line 3 stations.
According to National Telecommunications Commission (NTC), SMART and A&A [the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT EDSA)’s service provider] and the Department of Transportation MRT-3 stations reported that this 230,000 of the 444,044 daily commuters access and connect to the EDSA Free WiFi internet during peak hours. The report shows that heavy usage of the EDSA internet were in the following MRT-3 stations: Taft Avenue, North Avenue, Cubao, Ayala, Shaw Boulevard, and Boni Avenue. This shows that almost half of these daily commuters rely heavily on EDSA Free WiFi to access the internet while on transit.
It is also good to note that these free EDSA internet access is not slow. Individual speed tests where conducted by NTC EDSA using OOKLA or the Speedtest app. The highest recorded download speed was around 300 Mbps at Ortigas station while the highest recorded upload speed was also around 300 Mbps at the Magallanes station. While in some areas, an average download and upload speeds clocked around 100 Mbps to 150 Mbps.
Hearing this news made me happy and proud. Though it’s not the entire Philippines yet, but slowly, we will be seeing improved internet connectivity in public areas. Thus, access to information can now be shared by every Filipino.
EDSA Free Wi-Fi Project is made possible with the help of the following agencies, companies and government units: NTC, the DOTr MRT 3, Metro Rail Transit Development Corporation, Light Rail Transit Authority, Light Rail Manila Corporation, Metro Manila Development Authority, Department of Public Works and Highways, Manila Electric Company, Philippine Reclamation Authority, the local government units of Makati, Mandaluyong, Pasay and Quezon City, A&A, PLDT-Smart, and Globe.