WA’s Public Transport Authority has launched a market consultation tender on behalf of the WA Government, to investigate providing free Wi-Fi to public transport customers.
The Free to Public Wi-Fi Access on WA Public Transport Market Consultation was issued to Tenders WA by the Public Transport Authority on July 7, and state transport minister Dean Nalder on Sunday said the government planned a trial involving trains and buses, as well as central Perth stations and bus stops.
“We live in a highly connected community,” Nalder said. “We use online services to shop, bank and chat with our friends and families.
“Governments need to respond to the community’s preference for greater flexibility, quick access to information and easier transactions.
“This is part of our strategy to deliver a better customer service for passengers.”
A number of companies have approached the government in recent times, with some offering to install Wi-Fi for free, in exchange for advertising revenue, Nalder said.
“I am confident we already have the best public transport system in the country,” he said, “but it is important we stay ahead of the curve and look at ways we can improve.”
The planned trial would run on 10 trains, on all lines. The length of the trial is still to be determined. The market consultation tender closes on September 1.
PTA said on the WA Tenders site: “Respondents are invited to provide details of supplying a completely separate and managed carrier grade solution which satisfies free public Wi-Fi access at PTA Public Transport stations or terminals and on-board Transperth transport services.
“Details on whether the carrier service is a public or controlled private network, network security methodologies and issues such as reliability, guaranteed throughputs, bandwidth capacity and flexibility should all be addressed. The specific requirements for respondents to address can be found in Book 2(a) of this document.”
“This Government is committed to delivering smart and effective transport solutions for our growing city,” Nalder concluded. “That’s why we’ve decided to go to the market to find out if it’s reasonable to improve the customer experience in this way.”