It’s not just at upscale coffee shops that you can surf the internet; your local chai seller or kirana store could also offer Wi-Fi for as little as Rs 10. A number of these stores across Delhi and Bengaluru have partnered with startups to provide pre-paid WiFi packs for between Re 1 and Rs 20. The idea is to provide cheap, wireless internet connectivity to urban slums and rural areas.
In south Delhi’s Sangam Vihar, close to the Haryana border, stationery shop owner Braham Prakash has sold 250 coupons since he set up a Wi-Fi hotspot in his store two-and-a-half months ago. The biggest seller is a Re 1 coupon that gives a user a five-minute connection. “It is mostly younger people, between the ages of 15 and 25, who buy these. They come for five minutes, download a game or a song and leave,” says Prakash.
TOI tried out the five-minute connection for speed and managed to download two 11-minute podcasts.