BSNL targets 1 lakh wireless broadband customers from rural areas

It now seems that the BSNL-MTNL asset monetisation programme could become a good part of that estimate

State-run BSNL on Wednesday said it expects to gain at least 1 lakh new broadband customers during the next fiscal in rural areas under its new Bharat Airfibre service.

The connections will be sold through a partner registered with it and the broadband service will be provided using wi-fi frequency range using free radiowaves.

"We expect to have at least 1 lakh Bharat Airfibre connections in fiscal year 2021. BSNL will provide bandwidth to partners and the partners will sell it further to people in rural areas," BSNL Director (CFA) Vivek Banzal said while launching the service.

The connections will be provided in rural areas as there are chances of less interference in the wireless service from products like microwave oven, wifi devices etc.

"Partners will have to invest setting up the service. The investment starts in the price range of Rs 45,000-50,000 and the customer premise equipment that will be installed at subscriber end will cost around Rs 3,000. We expect to have at least 3,000 partners to come on board in three months," Banzal said.

Customer verification and quality of service issues will be handled by BSNL.

The plans for BSNL Airfibre connections will start from Rs 500 per month onwards and customers will also get calling facilities over wifi also in the same connection, Banzal said.

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