Chennai Metro Rail Limited (CMRL) and SugarBox Networks are together enabling metro users in Chennai to stream, shop, transact and download content at zero data cost and without any real-time dependency on digital connectivity.
Consumer mobility today is witnessing an interesting and transformational shift. We all have travelled a long way from those intercity buses to now moving around in metro trains and speed boats. And one constant need has been to stay connected when in transit, on road or in a metro. However, with the burgeoning footfall across metro stations today, consumers often witness intermittent or lack of connectivity. This has often been attributed to the unavailability or inability of the existing infrastructure to service consumer demands. This is where Chennai Metro and SugarBox are together building a stellar example of in-travel connectivity, which could unequivocally be compared to international train networks.
Today, SugarBox Networks powers in-transit connectivity across Chennai Metro (the entire metro travel route), offering metro commuters content across various categories such as entertainment, education, ecommerce and fintech too. In fact, this “Made in India” innovative disruption uses world’s first patented cloud fragment technology to power in-transit connectivity across the metros at CMRL, enabling access to digital information, even when the network is intermittent or unavailable.
Presently, the SugarBox zone is active across all the metro trains in Chennai, where metro commuters can connect to the Wi-Fi network and access digital services from brands like Zee5, Praakritik, Leaf Studios, ManMatters, Giva, Avni and more (throughout their entire journey), as well as download movies or web series to be consumed later at their convenience, and at no extra data cost.
Infact a recent survey conducted by SugarBox (Consumer Insights team) indicated that in the last one-month users have streamed and downloaded content majorly between 8 am to 11 am and 6 pm to 10 pm. Content in languages such as Tamil, Kannada, Telugu, and Hindi were frequently viewed. It’s interesting to note that close to 64% of this consumption is driven by downloads, which mean users prefer to download for viewing it later.
“Access to Digital connectivity is an essential need for consumers across geographies. Especially, when in-transit, commuters often view their travel time as a window to catch up on favourite shows or browse through e-commerce sites. However, this sometimes gets interrupted due to intermittent or absence of network connectivity. Changing the perception that – staying digitally connected when travelling is not a possibility – is where our solution makes a valuable impact. Our patented hyperlocal edge cloud technology makes it possible to be digitally connected even when on the go. In other words, at the SugarBox wifi zones within the metro, passengers can get reliable access to digital content and services, irrespective of their network availability. We are thankful to the Chennai Metro for ensuring our collaboration solves the in-transit digital connectivity problems for commuters at large,” elaborated Rohit Paranjpe, CEO & Co-founder, SugarBox Networks.
With disruptive technology at its heart, SugarBox is curating innovative solutions to reduce the existing digital divide, an occurrence owing to multiple reasons such as network fluctuations, buffering, less than advertised speed (amongst other reasons). SugarBox aims to revolutionize India’s digital ecosystem with its hyperlocal edge cloud technology solution and is on its way to impact over 350mn Indians by 2024. SugarBox is also present across several touch points including L&T Hyderabad Metro Rail Hyderabad (LTMRHL), Central Railway (Suburban Mumbai) and has partnered with CSC e-governance, to provide digital access to the unserved, remote villages of the country.