The Department of Science and Technology’s (DOST) Free Wi-Fi Internet Access in Public Places project will be a huge step toward providing better living conditions for Filipinos in rural areas.

This was revealed by  officials from DOST’s Information and Communications Technology (ICT)  Office during a recent press briefing for the project launch on July 24, 2015 as part of the activities lined up for the Science Department’s National Science and Technology Week (NSTW) from July 24-28, 2015 at SMX Convention Center in Pasay City.

ICT Office Deputy Executive Director Bettina Quimson said that helping folks in the countryside to reap the benefits of Internet connectivity will jumpstart economic development for them.  

ICT Office, for one, has been promoting online jobs in different unserved and underserved areas in the country to help residents make the most of the Internet while earning a decent income without leaving the comfort of their homes.

Internet connection via Free WiFi Internet Access in Public Places will also help improve the educational system in these areas, Quimson stated.

“Internet has changed the way we live and the way we can reach our own success.  Free Wi-Fi Internet Access in Public Places Project of DOST will help a lot of residents of unserved and underserved areas in the country to have more opportunities for learning and livelihood and better access to government services,” said DOST Secretary Mario G. Montejo in a separate interview.

Meanwhile, DOST Undersecretary Louis Napoleon Casambre emphasized that more than being just a repository of data, the Internet can also be used to inform and empower citizens.  “Whether it is disseminating news and warnings about natural disasters or providing platforms to discuss issues concerning the nation, the Internet has shown to be an important tool in creating an informed citizenry,” he explained.

Alpha Launch Test System

Casambre also announced that certain places in Quezon City and Manila will have free Internet starting on July 24, as part of an alpha launch test that will help ICT Office assess the system and make the necessary adjustments before rolling out the project on a larger scale.

These places are the Quezon City Memorial Circle, Quezon City Hall, PHILCOA, Social Security System, and LTO in Quezon City and Rizal Park in Manila.

ICT Office expects a maximum number of 4,550 concurrent Internet users in these places, but is prepared to provide and maintain the speed and connection quality for up to 105,000 users. Aside from checking their email and social media accounts as well as visiting other websites, users may also access government e-services.

The network will implement a blacklist system to block potentially harmful and destructive websites to keep information secure.

The launching of Free Wi-Fi Internet Access in Public Places will be held on July 24, 2015, 1:30 pm at the Main Stage of SMX Convention Center. For more information about NSTW, visit and  #nstw2015  #dostph  (S&T Media Service)

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