Classifieds giant Gumtree has partnered with Project Isizwe to bring free Wi-Fi to low-income communities across South Africa, starting with a large roll-out in the City of Tshwane.
The initiative plans to create the capacity to connect over 1 million people in the municipal area by August 2014 via 219 “Free Internet Zones”, with even greater capacity planned for 2015.
Project Isizwe was founded by Alan Knott-Craig Jnr as a non-profit organisation with the goal of bringing connectivity to people in low income communities through free Wi-Fi zones placed in various locations across the country.
The first phase of the project was launched in November 2013 at six campuses and activity hubs across Tshwane.
The second phase will see an additional 213 Free Internet Zones rolled out in Soshanguve, Mamelodi, and Atteridgeville.
Each of the Free Internet Zone (FIZ) locations allow users with Wi-Fi enabled devices such as mobile phones, tablets, laptops, and desktop computers to access free internet without any logins or passwords.
A fair usage policy limits users to a data cap of 250MB per device per day and prohibits access to certain sites to protect against abuse of the free service.
However, once the cap has run out, users will still be able to access a specialised content portal known as Tobetsa – which includes access to Gumtree’s portal for job seekers and educational information.
Project Isizwe and Gumtree plan to roll-out the same initiative at eight low-income schools in Atlantis and Robertson in the Western Cape, connecting 20,000 people before expanding further across the province.