Fri | Dec 4, 2020

May Pen welcomes free public Wi-Fi service

Published:Sunday | November 22, 2020 | 8:02 AMCecelia Campbell-Livingston/Gleaner Writer
From left: Technology Minister Darly Vaz unveils a sign to reflect the launch of the free Wi-Fi service in May Pen, Clarendon, as Clarendon Central Member of Parliament Mike Henry, Clarendon Custos William Shagoury, May Pen Mayor Winston Maragh and Univers
From left: Technology Minister Darly Vaz unveils a sign to reflect the launch of the free Wi-Fi service in May Pen, Clarendon, as Clarendon Central Member of Parliament Mike Henry, Clarendon Custos William Shagoury, May Pen Mayor Winston Maragh and Universal Service Fund CEO Daniel Dawes look on.
Jason Williams of the Universal Service Fund assists Mark ‘Juici’ Henry to connect to the Internet using the free public Wi-Fi during its launch in May Pen, Clarendon, yesterday.
Jason Williams of the Universal Service Fund assists Mark ‘Juici’ Henry to connect to the Internet using the free public Wi-Fi during its launch in May Pen, Clarendon, yesterday.
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Olive Dyer and Greta Surf were ecstatic yesterday during the official launch of the May Pen public Wi-Fi.

“A long time they should have this and I am feeling great about it ‘cause when I leave my home, which has the service, I can reconnect on the public Wi-Fi,” Dyer said happily.

An added advantage, she shared, was that if she has any emergency and doesn’t have any credit on her phone while in the Clarendon capital, she can log on to the service and call back home.

Surf, who wasted no time in testing it out even before yesterday’s launch, expressed joy that May Pen was finally “up to the time”.

“I’m proud to have it. When I don’t have any service, it helps me a lot. I like it and I like what it does for the country,” she told The Gleaner.

Commissioned into service by the Universal Service Fund, the Wi-Fi hotspot can accommodate up to 1,000 connections at a time.

Digicel Product Manager Toni-Ann Burrows, who was charged with overseeing the implementation, said there are at least nine access points so that while roaming, persons can still have Internet access once they are in the general area of the town.

Technology Minister Daryl Vaz stressed the importance of Internet connectivity in today’s world, where the COVID-19 pandemic has moved many activities online.

He said a plan is being worked on to fast-track such initiatives in the rural areas.

Urging those who will be utilising the service to be mindful of their online presence and of the websites they visit, Vaz also warned them to be careful of the information shared over the Internet.

Before the end of the year, at least three more towns will be enjoying public Wi-Fi hotspots, with another Clarendon town – Chapelton – set to be connected on December 9.

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