Commuters on low data plans rejoice, Singapore telco M1 and the IDA have partnered up to serve a free WiFi service: WiFi-On-The-Go, on two SMRT Service 176 buses.

This is part of the local Heterogeneous Network (HetNet) — a solution developed by US-based telecommunication service Parallel Wireless — trials which aims “to validate advanced telecommunication technologies, and a network’s capabilities in providing pervasive and seamless connectivity in a real-life setting,” an official press release stated.

Each connected bus is linked to M1’s 4G+ network through an intelligent in-vehicle unit that boosts the bandwidth available to the on-board wireless network.

This bus service runs from Bukit Merah Interchange to Bukit Panjang Temporary Bus Park, and commuters can go online by connecting to the “[email protected]” network on their smart devices. The two WiFi-enabled buses will highlight the service via on-board signages.

By the end of April, HetNet will roll out the M1WiFi service — which it claims will be 10 times faster than [email protected] using a “carrier aggregation for backhaul” — on these buses. This service will, however, be only available to M1 customers.

In the future, WiFi-On-The-Go could potentially help businesses such as tour operators and fleet operators provide web-enabled services such as live video streaming and e-payment.

WiFi-On-The-Go is not Singapore’s first attempt at enabling free WiFi on public transport services. In October last year, the LTA launched WiFi services at 33 MRT stations.