The Need for Free Public WiFi
We all know the importance of internet and are very dependent on it even if we do not realize it. In our day to day activities, almost 70-75% of our work involves the use of internet. We require internet for our studies, learning new things, to look for job opportunities, to communicate with our friends and relatives even if they are living in some other continent.
All these uses of internet and the network itself was just a dream for the older generation but now, today’s generation has become dependent on it, so much that we have a constant internet connection in our mobile phones and laptops even if we are travelling.
In this situation where internet connection is the need of the hour, a public Wi-Fi connection would be like a boon to that person’s daily work and therefore, he would not think before using this public Wi-Fi connection.
In a country like India, where more than 60% of the population is the younger generation and half of this population has a lot of problems to deal with.
For example, some children belong to poor families that they have a poor financial condition, some children might be belonging to middle class families but the internet might be a kind of extra luxury which they are not able to afford, etc.
All these conditions somewhere become aa hindrance to the development of the child’s social life. Internet is not just for the purpose of communication, it is more for the purpose of educating the people who can not learn or gain the education via traditional routes.
We have heard about the digital India scheme which was launched and promoted by the Prime Minister of India and then offering free internet for a year. This was all done to promote digital literacy in India and because of this scheme, the term free public Wi-Fi came into existence.
The sole purpose of providing a free Wi-Fi in India is to promote free education to each and every child of the nation and also to provide the digital freedom which is the need of the hour and has now become a right of every Indian Citizen.
Advantages of having free Public WiFi
The advantages of having free public Wi-Fi are quite obvious. It has already been listed down as to how a free public Wi-Fi can be useful to the people.
To obtain the free Wi-Fi connection is also very simple i.e. one just simply has to register into the portal fill in the personal details and get connected to the free Wi-Fi network.
Nowadays, even colleges, shopping malls, restaurants, railways stations, etc. have started offering free Wi-Fi. Some of the above mentioned places like the restaurants and shopping malls offer free public Wi-Fi just for the sake of publicity that is to attract the public attention.
But the colleges and other educational institutes offer free public Wi-Fi to promote education or at least give digital freedom to the students so that they do not get stuck in their studies if they have no information or knowledge.
Thus, the basic agenda behind providing free public Wi-Fi is to give free knowledge in the form of digital freedom. To gain as much knowledge as one can gain from this free public Wi-Fi without facing any problems related to the location of that person.
Any person can gain access to free public Wi-Fi irrespective of his location that is even if he has his books at home and at that moment if he needs urgent information he can just type it in any browser and get the information provided he has a proper internet connection. This is possible with free public Wi-Fi.
Another aspect of this public Wi-Fi is that it is free that is even if a person is poor or cannot afford an internet connection but has a smart phone can easily get Wi-Fi from the free public hotspot and do his work. This is basically very helpful to the children who belong to poor families.
Nowadays, smart phones have become easily available and affordable. Therefore, having a smart phone is easy but internet connection in it is a bit difficult. Public Wi-Fi is not restricted to rich people or poor people, it for all the citizens on a while therefore, this problem of the financially poor class is solved when they are offered free public Wi-Fi.
Disadvantages of free Public WiFi
As there are advantages similarly, there are disadvantages. Now one might think that there is free public Wi-Fi means there must be some or the other fault in this scheme. Whether purposely or not it is no unknown but yes, public Wi-Fi has a fault or rather a drawback that it is and insecure connection.
Yes, a public Wi-Fi connection is insecure as all the transactions done by using this connection is vulnerable and therefore, open to attack by anyone. Therefore, it is suggested that a person while using public Wi-Fi should avoid making banking transactions, sharing of personal or private data over an unsecured public Wi-Fi communication network.
But this insecure public Wi-Fi does not stop the people from using it. Public Wi-Fi is surely or definitely meant for emergency or important situation. But nowadays we see that people go to a certain place so that they can access the free Wi-Fi of that area or location.
And even if they go to a certain place, like the shopping malls or digital libraries or cyber cafes, they do not use the internet to learn or gain some knowledge. They use the internet for accessing their social media accounts. This is the worst case of how the free public Wi-Fi is misused.
There are several other advantages as well as disadvantages of the free public Wi-Fi but in the end it all depends upon how a person intends on using it. Internet connection is the need of today’s generation and the most powerful weapon to compete with the already digitalised nations.
It is in our hands regarding how we use this free and very useful raw material, in order to build ourselves towards the path of development.
After all the government has promoted the idea of providing this free public Wi-Fi, just to promote digital literacy and develop ourselves as the digitally literate citizens of this developing nation.