Bus vannin is rolling out free WiFi on all its services.
In line with the Isle of Man Government’s Digital Strategy the majority of bus vannin buses will have the free service by the summer.
Already 42 vehicles of its 65-strong fleet have been fitted with industry leading routers to provide unlimited broadband browsing by passengers. In February bus vannin saw 994 passengers enjoy 2,622 sessions spending an average of 26 minutes online.
Infrastructure Minister Phil Gawne MHK said:
‘Fitting free Wi-Fi has been an ambition of ours for some time and we know it will be a welcome enhancement of our bus services. We have clean, efficient and regular bus services and with the addition of free WiFi, Isle of Man public transport is now demonstrably a great alternative for business commuters across the Island and for those travelling to and from the airport.’
The bus garage at Banks Circus is fitting the routers on Island buses in conjunction with Sure Isle of Man in the project managed by the Cabinet Office’s Government Technology Service. Built by Icomera, currently an industry leading manufacturer in WiFi technologies for transport services worldwide, the routers use a 4G signal, provided by Sure, to distribute broadband.
Mike Phillips, CEO of Sure Isle of Man, said:
‘We’re really pleased to be working with the Isle of Man Government on this initiative to help it achieve its digital principles and benefit the community.
‘Opportunities for businesses and the government to work together on exciting strategic projects like this should be embraced as they facilitate the exchange of skills and knowledge for the benefit of all islanders. We hope that bus users enjoy the free WiFi facilities and make the most of this fantastic addition to the bus fleet.’
Director of Government Technology Services Mark Lewin added:
‘There is a clear and growing need for Government’s information and services to be available online and increasing the places where the general public can safely access essential information was outlined in the strategy as one of the digital principles. Since then we’ve been extending the availability of WiFi across a number of areas including Government buildings and local GP surgeries and this launch of a free to all WiFi service in public transport is already being extensively used by the public on daily basis and is part of the broader strategy.’
Photo shows representatives of Public Transport, GTS and Sure Isle of Man using their devices on the free bus Wi-Fi. Front row (left to right): Ian Longworth, Director of Public Transport, Phil Gawne MHK, Minister for Infrastructure, Laura Morgan, Network Architect with GTS and bus Wi-Fi Project Lead, and Mike Phillips, CEO of Sure IoM