EThekwini Municipality’s Transport Authority invited The Weekly Gazette to test drive the Go Durban bus’s free Wi-Fi on Thursday, 7 September and the community of Durban will get the same chance over the next nine months as 10 People Mover buses get fitted with Wi-Fi capabilities. The 10 People Mover buses will be market with Go Durban branding to flag them as Wi-Fi hot spot to commuters as they travel the inner city.

To put the Wi-Fi to the test, commuters will need to sign in via their social media accounts or create an account by inputting their details before connecting to “eThekweni_WiFi” for the daily 250MB available to each commuter, during their ride around the city.

“The team from ETA look forward to engaging with the public as they investigate how we will be making provision for this in the Go Durban system,” said Head of eThekwini Transport Authority, Thami Manyathi.

The initiative coincides with eThekweni Municipality City Manager, Sipho Nzuza’s hope to develop Durban into a Smart city. “It will boost productivity and efficiency as commuters can start downloading their emails before they even reach the office,” said Nzuza.

Also at the event were Suben Govender, Customer Relationship Manager at the City’s Information Management Unit,
and Francis Shen, General Manager for Huawei, KZN. “We look forward to making this city a beautiful city together,” said Shen.

When Go Durban becomes operational Wi-Fi will be provided on buses travelling along major routes, as well as within stations. This will allow commuters to access time-tables, routes and watch for updates from the eThekwini Transport Authority’s management centre. “Of course, they would be able to use it for work and recreational purposes as well. A big bonus for those who commute long distances and could use the access for improved productivity,” says Manyathi.

The public are to be aware that this testing is over a limited period as to validate the proof of concept which may be applied to the Go Durban system, and is not a permanent Wi-Fi solution to existing public operators of the People Mover. For more information about GO!Durban go to www.godurban.co.za