Google announced today that included in its collection of updates will be more Wi-Fi hotspots in public places that will help "the next billion" internet users in India and other emerging markets. This will be called "Google Station" and they are still looking for partners.
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The strategy started in January when Google introduced free internet on India's railways in a partnership with state-owned company RailTech. According to users, it has been extremely successful and even provides better coverage than some of the paid-for hotspots in India.
Of course, Google wants more people to be online so that they use their services. It makes money from people being online. Connectivity is an important part of their strategy, and they have to fix the missing or disconnected parts of the world. In India alone, an estimates 10,000 people go online for the first time each hour, according to Tech Crunch.
The company has been pushing the free Wi-Fi initiative, revealing that it now covers 50 national stations, providing internet to 3.5 million people each month. They are targeting 400 stations worldwide.
Google Station is aimed at all public locations, including malls, city centers, and bus stops. The aim is much wider than India, Google remarked.
“We’re just getting started and are looking for a few strategic, forward-thinking partners to work with on this effort,” it added in a statement.
Google has been doing much to help with the connectivity through Google Station, Project Fi, and Google Fiber. It will hopefully give a reliable, secure internet connection to people who might not get it any other way - a potentially life-changing connection.