The Brazilian government will start testing free public broadband this coming Saturday (14).
Known as 0800 broadband, the service will initially encompass public sector websites including job boards, bus timetables and information about cultural events.
The websites will pay for the connection, which will be made via mobile phones and will take place in São Sebastião, in the state of Distrito Federal, in the vicinity of the capital, Brasília. If successful, the initiative may grow to include private sector websites.
The tests will last for a couple of weeks and will involve 80 members of the public previously selected by the government, according to tech news website Computerworld.
Mobile operators Claro, Oi, TIM and Vivo will provide the handsets, as well as technical support. The project will then be evaluated by the users upon completion to ascertain its financial and technical feasibility.
The programme is part of the Brazilian government’s plan to provide better connectivity ahead of the World Cup in 2014 and the Olympic Games in 2016. It is also is part of the National Broadband Plan.
Photo by Storm Crypt licensed under Creative Commons