Belgium to test free mobile internet at weekends

Summary

To help the country catch up with its neighbours when it comes to mobile internet use, the minister for the digital agenda is in talks with providers to offer free data over the weekend in October

Should the government test free mobile internet to try to convince people to use it?

Free samples

The federal government is planning a test project in October to offer free mobile internet during the weekend, Alexander De Croo, minister for the digital agenda, has announced. According to figures, Belgium is far behind its neighbours when it comes to the use of mobile internet on smartphone and tablet.

De Croo is in talks with mobile operators to provide free internet access for a limited number of weekends, with the aim of enticing people who are not using mobile internet by offering them a free sample. “I think a lot of people will be convinced if they can try it out without having to worry about the cost,” De Croo said.

In Belgium, 57.5% of the population uses mobile internet, less than in neighbouring countries like the Netherlands and France, and around the same level as Eastern European countries. 

The price of access, De Croo said, has come down from a high last year to a more attractive level. “Including the virtual operators, there are about 45 operators, so there’s plenty of competition, which has a good effect on prices,” he said. “There are a variety of plans, including mobile internet from €10 a month, but a lot of people don’t realise that.”

Photo: Ingimage