The Thai government will be expanding the free WiFi network which started in Bangkok, to the rest of the country by 2013. Eighty percent of Thailand will have access to free WiFi. The government is investing $27 million dollars for the project and is partnering with Thai mobile operators to make this happen. At present, there are 200,000 WiFi hot zones. This is part of the “Smart Thailand” initiative, which includes free tablet computers for students.
Thailand needs to improve its broadband network. At present, it barely reaches 40 percent of the population. The government’s Smart Thailand initiative aims to cover 95 percent of the population by 2020. TOT and CAT Telecom are partners with the government in rolling out the nationwide network.
Thailand is heavily investing in high tech infrastructure to modernise not just the communications network used by residents but also to monitor water levels around rivers and areas prone to flooding. Read about the Thai Royal Irrigation Department’s deployment of the world’s longest Wi-Fi mesh network covering 372 kilometres (231 miles) along the flood-prone Chao Phraya River. The department monitors water levels in real time using video cameras. Residents can also go online to check water and flood levels via the department’s video links.