Dial Up Internet

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    In News

    • Recently, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India repealed dial-up internet connection service norms.

    About

    • Dial-up Internet access is a form of Internet access that uses the facilities of the public switched telephone network (PSTN) to establish a connection to an Internet service provider (ISP) by dialling a telephone number on a conventional telephone line.
    • Dial-up connections use modems to decode audio signals into data to send to a router or computer.
    • The regulations were issued when the dial-up service was the only service available for accessing low-speed internet.
    • Dial-up internet speeds were theoretically capable of reaching a maximum of 56 kilobits per second.
    • The telecom technologies have evolved to offer high-speed broadband service on  xDSL, FTTH, LTE,

    Internet Users in India

    • According to the Internet in India report 2022 , There are 692 million active internet users in the country. Out of them, 351 million are from rural areas and 341 are from urban areas. As per Internet and Mobile Association of India, the number of internet users in India is likely to reach 900 million by 2025.
    • There are 346 million Indians engaging in  online transactions including digital payments and e-commerce. India has outnumbered the United States, where the population practising digital transactions is at 331 million.
    •  Around 762 million Indians have not adopted the Internet yet — including 63% from rural pockets of the country.
    • Number of male internet users is greater than female users across rural as well as urban areas.

    Govt Initiatives

    • Prime Minister Wi-Fi Access Network Interface (PM-WANI) : The objective of the programme  is to provide public Wi-Fi service through Public Data Offices (PDOs) spread across the length and breadth of the country just like what PCOs (Public Call Offices) did for telephone spread in India.
    • Bharat Net Project: It is the world’s largest rural broadband connectivity programme using Optical fibre to create robust middle-mile infrastructure for taking  broadband connectivity to Gram Panchayats.
    •  National Broadband Mission : It aims to  facilitate universal and equitable access to broadband services across the country.

    Challenges

    • Right of Way Challenge: Due to variable and complex legal procedures across states, non-uniformity in levies, and approvals from the Forest Department, Railways, and National Highway Authority, the Right of Way has been a contentious issue for the Indian telecom sector.
    • Insufficient Fixed-Line Penetration: The Indian network does not have very much fixed-line coverage, while most developed countries have a high penetration of fixed lines (telephone lines connected to a nationwide telephone network via metal wires or optical fibers).
      • There are fewer than 25% of towers in India connected to fiber networks, compared to more than 70% in developed nations.
    • Lack of Rural Connectivity: In India, adequate tele density has been achieved, but there is a large discrepancy between penetration in urban (55.42%) and rural (44.58%) areas.
      • Getting into semi-rural and rural areas is challenging for service providers due to the huge initial fixed costs.

    Way Forward

    • To realise the objectives of Digital India the creation of digital infrastructure and the development of digital skills must go hand in hand. The rural population needs to be empowered to make full use of digital opportunities

    Source:TH