An Indian startup that claims to be the world’s largest provider of affordable internet access has launched a new service that will let users rent a server on a daily basis for just Rs. 4, and rent it for up to 12 months.
The startup, Apex, is backed by venture capitalist Anil Dash and former Facebook COO David Marcus, who founded the social networking giant.
Dash told the Financial Times that Apexx is the first of its kind to be offering a ‘one-stop shop’ for affordable internet in India.
He said that he and Marcus wanted to bring internet to a large segment of the Indian population who have been left out of the broadband revolution by telecom operators, who have set up a number of expensive and limited services for internet users.
“We’re trying to get into a space where a small company can create a platform where the average person can buy a web server and use it for their home network,” he said.
“We want to empower a small segment of India, particularly rural Indians, who don’t have access to a reliable internet connection, to connect with the world.”
Dash added that the company is also planning to expand its services to other cities and states.
The company, which is based in Bangalore, has also launched a mobile app that allows users to rent a web host to connect their smartphone to a server.
Apex is aiming to provide free access to internet to millions of Indian people by 2020.
Its platform is being marketed as a ‘micro-service’, meaning it allows customers to rent one server for a monthly fee.
Apext’s pricing plan is Rs. 1,500 per month for a web hosting plan, or Rs. 3,000 per month if users want to rent multiple servers.
Dash said that Aepx was working with the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology to launch a nationwide broadband network.
He said that the startup will continue to expand as the country is moving towards digital transformation.