In view of the COVID-19, Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) has announced initiatives to ensure that Singapore residents – especially vulnerable segments including seniors and school-going children from low-income households – can go online for daily tasks and social activities.
IMDA said in a press statement that it will support the telcos in making immediate investments to upgrade their networks and further bolster Singapore’s nationwide network capacity.
The upgrades are expected to support consistent network experiences at residential areas. This is in response to the shift in network usage from commercial and office spaces to residential areas, IMDA said.
“Singapore is now in a circuit-breaker period to curb the spread of COVID-19, and we want to help all Singaporeans and residents to remain connected, productive and entertained," said Minister for Communications and Information S Iswaran.
"We will also give more help to students from low-income families who may need PCs/laptops and broadband services for their home-based learning," Iswaran added.
IMDA has enhanced the NEU PC Plus programme which supports low-income students with a subsidised PC and free fibre broadband. The agency is working with the industry and community self-help groups to steramline the application and provisioning process for the programme. More support has been rolled out for students under the Ministry of Education (MOE) Financial Assistance Scheme.
The agency is also working with Mediacorp, pay TV operators Singtel and StarHub, and other content providers, to make available more content, across free-to-air and over-the-top (OTT) platforms. This will complement the wide range of content already available.
Mediacorp will extend the time belts for both Suria and Vasantham channels with immediate effect. During this period, both channels will start transmission from 9am daily.