Singapore plans free Wi-Fi tests

Singapore's Infocomm Development Authority (IDA) is testing a free wireless Internet service ahead of the annual meeting of the boards of governors of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank, which take place this month in Singapore, according to an InfoWorld Daily report.

Singapore's government is taking advantage of the IMF and World Bank meetings to showcase the country's advanced technology infrastructure, including the use of 3G mobile networks.

The Wi-Fi trial covers part of downtown Singapore around the Suntec Singapore International Conference and Exhibition Center, where the IMF and World Bank meetings will be held, and includes five nearby shopping malls, the IDA said. Users will be able to surf the Internet for free in these areas at speeds of 512Kbps, it said, asking for Singaporeans to test the network and offer their feedback on the service, according to the report.

The month-long trial of the Wi-Fi service, called [email protected], comes ahead of plans to roll out a free nationwide Wi-Fi service. The national [email protected] service will enter operation in Singapore during January 2007, the report further said.