The South African National Taxi Council (SANTACO) has announced that it will be providing free Wi-Fi to commuters in taxis and around taxi ranks, effectively allowing passengers to surf the web for free. In order to provide commuters with Internet access, the 3G and 4G bandwidth that will be used in the taxis will be provided by Telkom.
The commuters will be able to stay connected while hopping between different taxis on their route by connecting to each taxi’s WiFi router. While the connection time is limited per taxi, by connecting to a different taxi it will extend their connection. Source
Each commuter would get 50MB free a month. Once they connected their device with the taxi’s Wi-Fi network, they would be able to use the 50MB in any taxi or rank which was connected. Once that 50MB was used up, a prompt would let the user know that the usage had run out. Users who wanted more access would have an option to buy more.
While the service is initially free, to those travelling via the upgraded taxi services, it is said that the taxi organisation would allow a multitude of partners and stakeholders to advertise on this particular platform. The revenue generated by advertisements will be used in order to fund the project. Source
“This initiative is part of Santaco’s long-term vision … aimed at modernising, revitalising, transforming and developing the taxi industry into a world-class taxi service,” said association president Philip Taaibosch.
Phase one of the project will see Wi-Fi access points rolled out to 1 500 taxis and about 50 taxi ranks. This phase will take about six months. The second phase will see the installation of between 4 000 and 5 000 Wi-Fi access points per month.