The aim of the scheme is to eventually provide wifi coverage to around 7000 of Italy’s central piazzas.

Every hotspot will be accessible via a smartphone app, which requires a single login for all locations.

Those behind the scheme say it will first be implemented in small towns with fewer than 2000 residents, particularly those in areas affected by earthquakes.

“Piazza WiFi Italia is a strategic project to support the digitalisation effort of the country through the provision of free wifi connections, starting from the smallest communities,” Marco Bellezza, Legal Advisor for Communications and Digital Innovation, said in a press release.

However, the new initiative has also been introduced in several major cities, including Rome, Milan, Bologna, Florence and Bari.

Most of the first 100 hotspots are in central and northern Italy, though authorities say the network will eventually cover the entire country with the help of €45 million in funding.

Contracts to introduce the scheme in various parts of the country were put out for tender at the beginning of July, and residents were invited to fill out a form, available online, to request free wifi in their town.