The first call for municipality applications for free Wi-Fi hotspots will open on May 15 2018 at 1pm CEST, the European Commission said.
Through this call, about 1183 municipalities will receive a WiFi4EU voucher of 15 000 euro to finance Wi-Fi equipment and its installation in public spaces.
On receiving the voucher, municipalities will have to offer secure Wi-Fi services, free-of-charge and without adverts, for at least three years.
Funding will only be provided for networks that do not duplicate already existing private or public free Wi-Fi services of a similar quality in the same public spaces.
To be eligible to apply, municipalities need to be registered on the WiFi4EU.eu web portal.
This portal was opened on March 20 and more than 17 000 municipalities have already registered, the Commission said.
The selection will be based on a “first-come first-served” basis. To ensure a balanced geographical distribution among EU member states, each country will obtain a minimum of 15 and maximum of 95 vouchers.
This is the first of a total of five calls that will be published till 2020, the Commission said.