State telco Myanmar Posts and Telecommunication (MPT) has joined the race to provide free Wi-Fi in public areas, saying it will launch public hotspots starting sometime next year.
MPT-KSGM deputy chief commercial officer U Thein Hoke told The Myanmar Times that the telco aims to provide Wi-Fi services in public parks and pagodas such as Maha Bandula Park and Shwedagon Pagoda, although download speeds will max out at 2 Mbps.
The announcement follows last month’s announcement by local ISP 5BB Broadband Company that it will provide free Wi-Fi service in 34 areas of Yangon.
Yangon Heartz Media CEO U Zaw Zaw Myo Lwin told the Times that while free Wi-Fi is great, ISPs need to make sure they offer stable connections. More importantly, he added, users of the free service should be wary of network security:
“According to the security and privacy warning, I should not access Wi-Fi free service because I have worry for my network security,’’ he said.
On a similar note, U Myo Myint Nyunt, general manager of 5BB’s sales and marketing department, advised people to be judicious about what kinds of services they use on public Wi-Fi networks:
“I think that people use only social media in Wi-Fi free zones and shouldn’t use this for important transactions, such as mobile banking and online shopping,” [he said].