As usual, the recent NBAA is a source of great story material if bizjets are your thing. Without a doubt, IFE takes a backseat to connectivity at this show, but the business aviation community is all about technology and its value to businesses. One theme that rings true for bizjets (and, no doubt commercial aviation) is “No Plane, No Gain”. While the value of business aircraft and their political ramifications are usually discussed in a “wink, wink, nod, nod” manner by us mortals, they do have their place in business. As an example, the growing business aviation market in China has not escaped the eye of Boeing and Airbus, and thus readers, we thought you might like to check out some of the presentations that will color the future of commercial connectivity.

The NBAA usually has a very robust presentation/panel discussion effort and the 64th Annual Meeting in Las Vegas was no different. Topics from flight safety to aircraft leasing are routinely covered. Of the 32 panel discussion/presentation meetings, we found a few very interesting as they chart a course for inflight connectivity options and practices. We really liked the downloadable PDF’s describing satcom connectivity – “NBAA Connecting Your Aircraft with Satellite Communications: The Equipment Providers” & “NBAA All the Satellite Communication Services You Want: The Multi-Service Providers”; and yes, the Grand Dame of IFE Satellite Connectivity, Elizabeth Young, presided over both. We contacted Liz and she told IFExpress: “Business jets are often the leaders in adapting and adopting new technology.¬† At this year’s NBAA convention, there was keen interest from the biz jet community in how Inmarsat and Iridium and the manufacturers who offer associated avionics and IFE services are expanding the options for aircraft owners and operators. ¬†While the coming of Ka-band services globally attracted attention, improvements in existing L-band and Ku-band services was also a ‘hot topic’.” In all, 8 PDF’s that tell a good story in total of the present condition of inflight data connectivity, voice, text messaging, and TV for the bizjet environments.

If the next generation of bizjet equipment (avionics, non-IFE and USA slanted) is your thing, try this panel presentation – “NBAA NexGen Equippage

At the show Thrane & Thrane delivered an interesting bizjet price point factoid about their newest satcom data system, AVIATOR, that seemed relevant to the world of inflight connectivity: “2 years ago, 128Kbps of data would have cost $500,000.00. Today, you can get 200Kbps at well under $100,000.00 for an AVIATOR 200 installed!” Now, if you just had a bizjet.

As an aside, the NBAA and pilot/owner members participate in a charity service that cannot be matched, Angel Flight. The free service helps those who need medical attention at remote locations who would not be able to afford or could not travel on commercial aircraft. We also note that the NBAA has come out publicly at the show against a new per-flight user taxes against non-recreational aircraft operators on top of the per-gallon fee on aircraft fuel ($100/flight). Bolen Tells Lawmakers: Industry Supports NextGen, But Not User Fees | NBAA – National Business Aviation Association

And now for something completely different:

IFExpress has been looking quite sometime for a technically updated description of the latest Wi-Fi networks, sans equations. There seems to be little out there that is technical enough but still readable in one setting. Not any more thanks to Ars Technica so we thought we would share it with our readers.

Don’t forget the APEX TC.