The Penang government has intensified its efforts to provide free broadband access in the island by adding another 750 free Wi-Fi hotspots throughout the state as part of phase two of its ‘Penang Free Wi-Fi’ initiative.
The installation of these 750 hotpots is expected to be completed by April 2012, by which time the number of free Wi-Fi coverage areas would have doubled to 1,500 total will cost RM8.5 million.
The ‘Penang Free Wi-Fi’ service is a component of the state’s Wireless@Penang initiative and the first 750 hotspots were launched in 2009. The free Wi-Fi service provider is REDtone Telecommunications Sdn Bhd (REDtone).
The state government today through Penang Development Corporation (PDC) Telecommunication Services Sdn Bhd signed an MOU with REDtone for the latter to install the facility for phase two of the ‘Penang Free Wi-Fi’ project. Signing on behalf of (PDC) Telecommunication Services Sdn Bhd is YB Jeff Ooi Chuan Aun, Chairman of (PDC) Telecommunication Services Sdn Bhd while REDtone is represented by its Wei Chuan Beng, Managing Director of REDtone International Bhd.
The free Wi-Fi service enables Penangites and visitors to the island to enjoy wireless Internet service without having to fork out any money at selected shopping complexes, commercial, residential areas and other public areas. The free Wi-Fi service locations are easily identified by signages.
Currently, there are 50,000 registered users for the ‘Penang Free Wi-Fi’ service. To become a user, the person will need to register first.
Key Points Of Collaboration Agreement for the Deployment of Wireless Broadband between PDC Telecommunications Sdn Bhd(PDCT) and Redtone International Berhad
Penang PR State Government For All; Free Wifi For All
General Terms – Salient Points
* Agreement is for an additional 750 free wifi hotspot to the public funded by the Penang state government through PDCTS which shall only be provided in the public areas.
* There are currently 750 existing free wifi hotspots. Redtone International Bhd (“Redtone”) provided and maintained free of charge. With the additional 750 free wifi hotspots funded by the Penang state government, there will be a total of 1500 units of Free Wifi Hotspots (“Sites”) available in Penang.
* Redtone shall provide an additional 50 Sites of which PDCT shall not be required to make any further payments (for installation or maintenance whatsoever).
* The installation at the proposed 750 Sites shall be completed within 12 months from the date hereof.
* Redtone shall provide 50 Mbps as backhaul to the Internet for the existing 750 Sites AND the new proposed 750 sites
* This agreement shall be for 5 years and have a value of RM 8,490,000. After 5 years both PDCT or the state government have the option of continuing the service annually at the cost of RM900,000/- per annum.
* Maintenance of the existing 750 Sites shall be free of charge. In the event Redtone fails to maintain the Sites, Redtone shall be deemed to have been in breach of the Agreement.
* In the event of a breach, PDCT shall have the absolute rights to claim full ownership over the existing 750 Sites and the proposed 750 Sites in addition to further compensation/damages from Redtone.
* All the 40 state constituencies in Penang shall be provided with at least Ten (10) free WiFi Hot Spots.
Apportionment of Revenue
* All net revenue generated from the advertising services shall be apportioned between PDCT and Redtone equally.
Each user of the Penang Free Wifi hotspots is given 1 mbps of internet connection and when the need arises, the user can be upgraded to 5 mbps, 10 mbps or even up to 54 mbps by Redtone International at no additional cost.