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  • 22,431 free public Wi-Fi units throughout Seoul used by 1.28 million citizens per day

  • Press Releases SMG 398
    • By using free public Wi-Fi, Seoul citizens can save approximately KRW 125.3 billion (18,535TB) a year on their telecommunication costs.
    • An average of 1.28 million citizens uses free public Wi-Fi per day, and the amount of data used per day stood at 51,998GB, which is equivalent to the amount with which one can watch videos on YouTube for 47,330 hours.
    • Seoul’s free public Wi-Fi service “Kkachi On” is operated by the integrated public Wi-Fi management center, enabling real-time monitoring and analysis of usage status.

    SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA, May 27, 2021 – “Kkachi On” is Seoul’s free public Wi-Fi that the Seoul Metropolitan Government installed across the city in November last year. The name “Kkachi On” is a combination of “Kkachi,” a magpie in Korean – the bird that symbolizes Seoul and good news – and “On” meaning turning on the Wi-Fi.

    According to the Seoul Metropolitan Government’s analysis of 17,079 “Kkachi On” usage over the last seven weeks, an average of 1.28 million citizens uses it per day. There are 22,431 public WiFi units across Seoul. Among them, usage of 17,079 units that are linked to data with control centers were analyzed.

    The amount of data used per day in May stood at 51,998GB, which is equivalent to the amount with which one can download 88,743 movies with 600MB and watch videos on YouTube for 47,330 hours.

    The total data usage for seven weeks was 1.66 million GB, and the average data usage per week was 237,565 GB, which has been increased by 8.1 percent over seven weeks. As a result, citizens are allowed to save approximately KRW 125.3 billion (USD 112 million) a year on their telecommunication costs.

    Wi-Fi 6-modeled new “Kkachi On” introduced last year for the first time in the world has four times faster speed with 313Mbps than the previous one.

    The amount of data usage had varied depending on the weather, and it tended to increase on weekdays and decrease on weekends and holidays when public facilities and welfare facilities were closed.

    Outdoor “Kkachi On” was used the most at parks, streams, main streets, traditional markets, and bus stops, while indoor ones were used the most at public facilities – such as district offices, community centers, and local community facilities – homeless rehabilitation facilities, children and youth protection facilities, multicultural women’s family support centers, and libraries.

    In the case of public Wi-Fi on buses used by an average of 810,000 citizens a day, the daily data usage of each city bus was higher than that of the village bus. City buses are analyzed to be used more by passengers because they travel longer distances and operating hours than village buses and travel between crowded areas and metropolitan areas in the city center.

    Seongdong-gu had the highest total amount of data usage among autonomous districts and the highest average amount of data per unit. It is analyzed as a result of installing “Kkachi On” at optimal locations considering the living population and surrounding environment from the design stage and promoting them through smart crosswalk LEDs at each site.

    Meanwhile, in interviews conducted by the Seoul Metropolitan Government, citizens responded they are very satisfied with free Wi-Fi services of “Kkachi On.”

    # A citizen, identified as Lee, who lives in a homeless rehabilitation facility in Seongdong-gu, said, “I didn’t even know that the government was giving anti-disaster support funds, but I got to know it through online news I can read because of a free public Wi-Fi unit installed in a public area.”

    # An employee of a rehabilitation facility said, “We are conducting the ‘free mobile phones opening program’ for homeless people to help them get back on their feet. However only 20 percent of the total homeless people who seek for the shelters had applied for the program because of the financial burden of telecommunication fee. But now, the number of the applicants has increased to 90 percentafter the free public Wi-Fi was installed. Thanks to this, they can contact their family who have been separated for a long time.”

    “Kkachi On” is operated by the integrated public Wi-Fi management center, which has integrated all management system separately run by various organizations. More than 76 percent of 22,431 public Wi-Fi units across Seoul are connected, enabling real-time monitoring and analysis of usage status.

    “Seoul’s integrated public Wi-Fi management center, the first of its kind, allows us to analyze Kkachi On’s detailed usage status,” said Lee Won-mok, Director-General for Smart City Policy at the Seoul Metropolitan Government. “We will thoroughly run public Wi-Fi as an essential infrastructure for a smart city and establish a global standard.”