The Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) and M1 have launched a trial Wi-Fi service for public buses.
Commuters on selected SMRT Service 176 buses can now use Singapore’s first WiFi-On-The-Go service, as part of the heterogeneous network (HetNet) trials.
The HetNet Trials are meant to validate advanced telecommunication technologies, and a network's capabilities in providing pervasive and seamless connectivity in a real-life setting.
Each connected bus is linked to M1’s 4G+ network through an intelligent in-vehicle unit that boosts the bandwidth available to the on-board wireless network.
Commuters on the buses, a trunk route service linking Bukit Merah Interchange and Bukit Panjang Temporary Bus Park can go online by connecting to the “[email protected]” network on their smart devices. Commuters will be able to identify the two WiFi-enabled buses through on-board signages highlighting the service.
M1's carrier WiFi service will also be available on the buses by end-April. The M1WiFi service, with download speeds more than ten times faster than available through [email protected], will seamlessly handover customers between M1’s mobile network and the WiFi-On-The-Go service before, during and after their journey, to enable them to able to enjoy activities such as streaming HD video content without interruption.
In addition to passenger benefits, WiFi-On-The-Go can help business by enabling new applications. For instance, inbound tour operators can now provide tourists with WiFi on board their tour buses. Vehicle fleet operators can also use the enhanced connectivity to stream live video and collect other relevant information from the vehicle, as well as provide transactional services.
“HetNet technological innovation is expected to bring about immediate and long term benefits for citizens. With the enhanced infrastructure, as a start, users in trial areas such as MRT stations and selected buses powered by M1, can now experience better coverage with seamless connectivity, IDA assistant CEO Khoong Hock Yun said.
“Beyond the trials, we look forward to working closer with companies in the tech, engineering and R&D space to develop solutions that can meet pressing connectivity challenges.”