Indian state-backed operator Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) is planning to invest around INR25 billion (USD374.78 million) in the second half of its fiscal year (ending 31 March 2017) on strengthening its core network, expanding its GSM coverage and the installation of additional Wi-Fi hotspots. The Economic Times cites Chairman and Managing Direcyot Anupam Shrivastava as saying that BSNL had earmarked INR40 billion for the year for its own projects, in addition to around INR30 billion of government-funded programmes – such as the construction of extra mobile tower sites in states affected by left wing extremism. BSNL’s GSM expansion programme is targeting the installation of 20,000 new base transceiver stations (BTS) with a view to improving service quality. The rollout started earlier this year, but the majority of the sites will be installed in BSNL’s H2.
Regarding its Wi-Fi project, BSNL currently has 2,700 active hotspots but wants to increase that figure to 40,000 by the end of March 2018. ‘We are going to connect these hotspots to our mobile network and therefore when our mobile customer enters our Wi-Fi zone, the data session will be seamlessly transferred to the Wi-Fi hotspot: it will be part of their data package, but they will suddenly start getting high speeds,’ the official explained.