Three new Wi-Fi sites were set up by the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) in Passi City, Iloilo province on Tuesday, bringing to 48 the existing free internet connections in public places in Western Visayas.
“They are relay sites. So they will be our source when we expand to other areas,” said Engr. Sherwin Roy Faduga, head of the DICT Infrastructure Management Section, in an interview on Tuesday.
Internet access was made available at the Passi Central School, the Department of Education Schools Division Office, and the City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (CDRRMO) as part of the activities in the monthlong celebration of National ICT Month this June.
Of the 45 sites, two are installed in plazas, 29 in public hospitals, three in national government agencies, and three in capitol offices in the region’s six provinces.
The existing Wi-Fi sites are all initiated by the regional office, Faduga said.
There used to be over 1,000 sites in Western Visayas, but contracts entered by the DICT central office with telecommunication providers were terminated on Dec. 2021.
“There are plans to innovate and upgrade the system and infrastructures of the free Wi-Fi. Before our free Wi-Fi has a low stream, so we plan to upgrade that is why we could not continue the previous contracts,” he added.
The plan, he said, calls for the upgrading of 50 to 100 megabits per second (MBPS) per site from what used to be five to 10 MBPS. They’re looking at the first procurement of the free Wi-Fi program by the central office in the third quarter of this year, he added.
“Most of our beneficiaries are schools, but we also have a proposal for our GIDA (geographically- isolated and disadvantaged areas) that have no access to technologies,” he said. (via PNA)