A passenger takes an RTA taxi at Al Maktoum International Airport. The RTA had offered 300 taxi number plates to all taxi franchises through an auction. Image Credit: Zarina Fernandes/Gulf News

Dubai: All of Dubai’s 10,800 taxis will have free Wi-Fi soon, as the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) signs a deal with telecom operator du to install the service in cabs.

The deal was signed on Wednesday at the Gitex Technology Week, as the RTA continues to enhance mobility solutions in Dubai.

The step aims to bring happiness to riders and make clients’ mobility on board Dubai taxis an enjoyable experience. The two parties pronounced their commitment to support the efforts of making Dubai the smartest and happiest city in the world.

According to the RTA, du will start installing Wi-Fi services on taxis immediately and all the vehicles will be equipped with the technology within a year.

“According to the agreement, du will start fitting the required devices to taxis. All fleet vehicles of the six franchise companies operating in Dubai will be covered by the service within one year from the date of signing this agreement,” said Ahmad Hashem Behroozian, CEO of RTA’s Public Transport Agency.

He added that the Wi-Fi service enables taxi riders to browse the internet using their mobile phones, tabs or handheld devices.

“It saves them the time and enables them to do several tasks while on transit. RTA is always keen on using the state-of-the-art technology in collaboration with service providers in the UAE,” he said.

du CEO Osman Sultan said: “This initiative is an important step in our efforts to support the UAE Government’s Vision 2021 to provide accessible modern telecommunication services.”

The initiative comes following a pilot project that launched in 2016, to equip 500 airport taxis with Wi-Fi, also installed by du.