Los Angeles | September 24, 2018– Global Eagle Entertainment Inc. [NASDAQ: ENT] has announced Canadian North Airlines as the first customer for Global Eagle’s new product, Airconnect Go, a portable wireless in-flight entertainment solution.  Airconnect Go draws on Global Eagle’s award-winning Airtime entertainment platform and content leadership to allow quick deployment of a proven and superior passenger experience.

“Every passenger expects entertainment and Airconnect Go is a high-quality portable system that takes advantage of Global Eagle’s industry-leading passenger entertainment platform,” said Per Norén, Executive VP and Chief Commercial Officer of Global Eagle. “We thank Canadian North for being the launch customer and we expect a significant number of airlines to follow.”

“Throughout Canadian North’s history, we have continually grown and innovated for the benefit of our scheduled service and charter customers, always with warm hospitality and an unyielding commitment to safety,” said Steve Hankirk, President of Canadian North. “The launch of top-notch inflight entertainment options will further enhance our onboard experience. We’re thrilled to be working with Global Eagle to introduce this exciting new inflight amenity.”

The first deployments for Calgary, Canada-based Canadian North will be during December 2018 with four Boeing 737 aircraft. Canadian North operates daily scheduled flights to, from and across Canada’s vast Arctic region. It also operates charter flights in North America and beyond for energy companies, sports teams, tour operators, cruise lines, government agencies and other large groups.

Airconnect Go: The Best Combination

Airconnect Go, which was unveiled in April 2018 at the Aircraft Interiors show in Hamburg, combines a reliable hardware system with Global Eagle’s Airtime services, including a proven passenger experience and entertainment packages with industry-best movie, audio and video offerings. The product is so compact it can fit into the overhead bin of most commercial aircraft. A single Airconnect Go system, which is not much bigger than a loaf of bread, can stream concurrently to over 50 users. Passenger analytics can be tracked using Global Eagle’s Airview reporting system.

The system is a low-cost and fast option for airlines. There is no hardware to install and the system complies with avionics standards without the need for additional aircraft certification or Supplemental Type Certificates (STCs). Passengers can use their own devices to stream content. Airconnect Go integrates Airtime’s leading Digital Rights Management capabilities, enabling passengers to play back content via their web-browser without an additional application being required for Apple iOS or Google Android devices and laptops.

Global Eagle has experienced interest in Airconnect Go from a variety of airlines, including large and full-service carriers with service gaps, regional airlines, charter carriers, airlines with small or leased fleets and other companies where the combination of low-cost and high quality is the goal.

 

Melbourne, FL | October 17, 2016– This official approval by the FAA marks SD as an authorized manufacturer for avionics, as well as an authorized maintenance repair and overhaul center for all SD avionics.

The certification was awarded for its development of the SD WiFi Hub, the standalone router and WiFi solution that enables onboard voice and data communications. Over the last five months, the associated processes, manufacturing quality manuals, and the physical setup at their World Headquarters location in Melbourne, FL, have been audited by the Orlando Manufacturing & Inspection District Office (MIDO), in order to gain the approval.

The PMA certification will allow SD to use Supplemental Type Certificates (STCs) to quickly obtain approvals on future hardware developments.

“This milestone accomplishment demonstrates our ongoing commitment to aerospace manufacturing, and our continued efforts to expand our capabilities as a technology innovator,” said Ken Bantoft, SD Chief Technology Officer.

(IFExpress Readers: It is fairly obvious which image above is the SITA robot, Leo. (the middle image). However, in searching for a good robotic image for this week’s story, we came across a number of pictures that caught our interest (and imagination) as you can see above – PLW)

While we had some fun with the concept of airport robots, the folks at SITA are very serious about the future of robot technology in use with aviation – in this week’s case, airport baggage handling. We talked with Stephane Cheikh from SITA Lab who answered a number of questions we thought our readers might find interesting. While the future is rather unclear as to the use of robots in aviation solutions, handling passenger baggage appears to be one logical application. So, we asked a few folks at SITA and their communication people about LEO. Leidar’s Charlie Pryor told IFExpress when we asked the question about the application: “It’s really part of a bigger story about automation throughout the airport. And it is very much a trial at this stage, albeit an interesting one of course.”

Here are a few questions we asked of Stephane:

1. IFExpress: Let’s get started with robot power, we assume it is charged via wall power during the night and via alkaline or lead batteries while in use?

“Leo runs on two lead batteries which can last between 24 to 48 hours depending on the type of operations required. The robot is programmed to autonomously return to its base station to get charged when it’s running low on battery power.”

2. IFExpress: Please describe the way a human interacts with the robot?

“Leo does not directly communicate with passengers. In the case of Geneva Airport Leo was positioned outside the terminal building. Touching Leo’s Scan&Fly bag drop interface opens the baggage compartment doors to allow passengers to place their bags inside. After the passengers have scanned their boarding passes, the tags are printed and can be attached to the bags. With the bags loaded and tagged, the compartment door closes and Leo displays the boarding gate and departure time.”

“Leo then takes the bags directly to the baggage handling area where they are sorted and connected to the correct flight while the passenger heads straight to the gate, bypassing the check-in hall. Being a fully autonomous, self-propelling baggage robot, Leo is able to transport bags from the point of bag drop to where they are handed over to be injected into the baggage handling system.

The doors of the robot can only be reopened by the operator unloading the baggage in the airport. For the purpose of the proof of concept at Geneva Airport, the baggage robot was monitored at all times.”

3. IFExpress: Please describe how it finds its way to the required destination? I presume robot speed is fixed?

Using GPS technology, Leo is programmed to follow a specific route from where the bag drop takes place to where the bags are handed over and injected into the baggage handling system. The robot’s speed is fixed but is able to stop if it detects passengers passing in front of it.”

4. IFExpress: Will airport inside destinations required any new facility construction?

“SITA hopes to continue further trials and proof of concepts to probe how robots such as Leo can be incorporated into airports. This will vary from customer to customer.  SITA continues to work with the industry to ensure that the baggage robot is able to meet the requirements of our airport customers.”

5. IFExpress: Has an approximate cost/price been determined of the robot?

“Leo is still a proof of concept and as such SITA is unable to provide a cost or price.”

6. IFExpress: Please describe and detail the human/movement sensors and protections?

“The robot has two laser-based sensors: one in front and one at the back of Leo. The robot is programmed to stop when the sensors detect an object either in front or behind. Sometimes if an object is close but still a safe distance away, the robot will decelerate until it is free of the object and then re-accelerate.
Leo also has an obstacle avoidance mode where it will go around an object – within certain thresholds.”

7. IFExpress: If I were an airline or airport, why would I want this device/system in my airport?

“During the trial at Geneva Airport, Leo demonstrated how, by taking the bag drop process out of the terminal building, the number of trolleys and bags in the terminal could be significantly reduced.

Leo also provides an early glimpse into the future of baggage processing and handling being explored by SITA Lab, SITA’s technology research team. Using robotics and artificial intelligence, bags will be collected, checked in, transported and loaded onto the correct flight without ever having to enter the terminal building or be directly handled by anyone other than the passengers themselves.”

8. IFExpress: Are there any rough technical specs available?

“As Leo is still in a developmental stage, we are not able to disclose more details than what has already been provided above.”

9. IFExpress: How would an airline or airport contact SITA/manufacturer of the robots if they wanted to test out a system?

“Airlines or airports can reach out their SITA representatives in their respective regions or contact us through the www.sita.aero website.”

(And yes, this is not an IFEC story per se; however, we wanted to check in on the future of robot technology in our business. Interestingly, SITA has been working the robot solution for some time now and, who knows, it may even be on an airplane in the future… and you may get your future headsets from one – Patricia Wiseman, Editor)


IFEC News:

1:  Here is a news release from Gogo about their new relationship with Aeromexico: Today, Gogo partner Aeromexico announced the launch of a pilot program to provide complimentary in-flight access to Netflix. Netflix members onboard select Aeromexico flights within Mexico, Central & South America will be able to stream the best programming available in the skies, including hit series Orange Is The New Black, Club de Cuervos and Chef’s Table, on their phones, tablets, and laptops at no cost starting on June 17th and through October 17th 2016.

The “Netflixabordo” experience is made possible by our next generation 2Ku satellite wifi system, which offers passengers a ground-like experience, including the ability to stream video.”As the first airline to launch with Gogo’s new 2Ku technology, we couldn’t be more excited to help Aeromexico bring this great new passenger experience to life,” said Dave Bijur, Gogo’s regional president. “Gogo’s industry-leading 2Ku technology is enabling passengers to connect using any Wi-Fi enabled device and experience all of Netflix’s hit series just as they would at home.”

“Passengers on aircraft equipped with the new Gogo 2Ku technology will be notified by the Aeromexico in-flight team that they can access high-speed WiFi. Clients can then open their browser and login for free. Passengers will then be prompted to either login to their existing Netflix account or to create a new, 30-day free trial account, after which they will then be connected to the Netflix service up in the air, just like they would on the ground. Existing account holders onboard Gogo 2ku Aeromexico aircraft will be able to access Netflix at no additional cost through October 17th, while new members can sign up to enjoy a 30-day free Netflix trial – good for use both in the air, on Aeromexico 2Ku-equipped aircrafts, or on the ground.”

Gogo told IFExpress: “Netflix offering is available to everyone flying that has an account. For those passengers that might not have an account, they are able to sign up for the free 30-day trial to take advantage of this partnership. In terms of bandwidth, we are confident that 2Ku can handle the amount of people on an aircraft that will choose to stream.” – Morgan Painter

Here is another release you might find interesting – Gogo Inc. Announces Launch of $500 Million Senior Secured Notes Offering – Jun 9, 2016

2:  IFE manufacturers might just have to consider a new baggage use for a totally new application – World’s First Passenger Drone to Begin Testing

3:  You might want to check out the 35th DASC in Sacramento CA, Sept 25/29, and here are just a couple reasons: MA1: Modern Avionics Architectures – Tim Etherington, Rockwell-Collins and MM2: Aircraft Systems, Safety and Cyber-security: RTCA DO-326A guidance – Laurent Fabre, Critical Systems Labs –www.dasconline.org

4:  Here is a new IFE & Connectivity Show in the US – IFE and Connectivity USA. And, it is co-located with Innovative Aircraft Seating – USA, June 27 – 28 in Seattle, WA!

5:  From an article in ArsTechnica on creating VPN lists, we found this interesting comment – “The best use case for consumer VPNs is local network security, especially on public Wi-Fi networks in airports, hotels, cafes, and even on airplanes (especially since GoGo has been caught issuing fake HTTP certificates for YouTube, which could expose all user traffic—including users’ YouTube passwords—to the inflight broadband provider).” Here is the story

– Majority of Fleet Now Equipped With Variety of Inflight Entertainment Options

Dallas, TX | February 19, 2013/PRNewswire/- Southwest Airlines (NYSE: LUV) announced today that movies on demand are now available on all WiFi-equipped Southwest aircraft for only $5 per movie, per device. The airline also announced an upgrade to their television package. In 2012, Southwest became the only airline in the world to stream live television directly to Customers’ personal devices. Now, in addition to eight channels of live news and sports, Customers can also select on-demand episodes of popular television shows. The upgraded TV package is $5 a day, per device on WiFi-enabled planes.

“Providing a comprehensive and robust inflight connectivity system for our Customers is paramount,” said Dave Ridley , Southwest Airlines’ Senior Vice President Business Development. “Our Flight Attendants are famous for delivering superb Customer Service, and we’re excited to enhance our onboard entertainment offering and take the Customer Experience to new heights.”

The majority of Southwest Customers now have access to WiFi, movies on demand, and the upgraded television offering. As of February 6, all Southwest Boeing 737-700 and 737-800 aircraft were equipped with Row 44 satellite technology that enables these entertainment offerings/services. This milestone represents nearly 75 percent of all Southwest aircraft, which completes the retrofit installations. Moving forward, all new deliveries and AirTran conversions will enter service with Row 44 technology installed.

WiFi service can be purchased for $8 a day, per device including stops and connections. Customers do not need to purchase WiFi in order to access movies or TV.

Accessing the Internet, or watching movies and television is simple. Customers use their WiFi-enabled device onboard any Boeing 737-700 or 737-800 aircraft, connect to “southwestwifi,” and launch their browser to be directed to the inflight entertainment portal. From the portal, Customers are able to select WiFi, movies, or television. The portal also provides free access to a flight tracker, shopping, and games. With Row 44 satellite technology, connectivity continues to work over bodies of water so Customers remain connected all day, no matter where they travel. This video highlights the Inflight connectivity experience.

For more information and visuals about using WiFi, movies, or television onboard, please visit the WiFi media kit on SWAmedia.

You read it right, this holiday season in the US (sorry Europe, Asia) Google from Silicon Valley is providing travelers at 47 US airports free Wi-Fi. The free service commenced November 10 and runs till January 15, 2010. At Seattle-Tacoma (SEA) and Burbank (BUR) airports, Google’s Andrew Pederson told us that the service will continue indefinitely. Google said, “… we like people online.” Rightfully so! This free offering from Google led to the ‘Virgin-Airlines-Free-Holiday-Inflight-Wi-Fi’ that was initiated about a month ago, helping drive the airborne leg. However, we were most interested in the airport arrangement and contacted SEA and BUR asking about the deal drivers – why forgo revenue that can easily exceed $100K per year?

Perry Cooper from progressive Seattle-Tacoma airport told us that they were very excited about the offer since they had a free Wi-Fi concept in their internal planning for 2010 and Google came along at just the right time. Seattle is now winding down a contract with AT&T, but expects everything to be in place in the very near future. At BUR airport, a spokesperson was not so optimistic about a free Wi-Fi future but this is where you readers can help. In fact US airports like SFO and LAX are not participating, probably because they do have exclusive service providers or advertising contracts and cannot participate; however, if travelers make it a point to contact their airport authority on the web or by phone and thank them if they participated in the free airport Wi-Fi from Google or tell them to adopt the Google deal if they did not…this could take off.

Check the links below for more information about participating airports. Further, send this Hot Topic to airport authorities in Asia, Europe and your backyard and help make a difference. We have all seen costly pay phones almost disappear at airports (killed by cell phones) and as a replacement, service providers and most airports alike, jumped on the paid Wi-Fi bandwagon. Gouging (yes, we said gouging) the traveling public seems natural in that greed driven environment. IFExpress has been on a mission for free airport Wi-Fi and we finally have a chance to change airports — so do your part. Remember, this is only a free service through the holidays. We recommend our readers beg their local airports and Google to keep this service alive after January 15, 2010. In many instances Google is installing the infrastructure and we fear that the airports may well turn them over to paid providers after the event closes.

There is one catch though, it is free, it is public, and there will be some bad actors trying to steal identities, passwords, and your money. There are a few safeguards and we have a link below to PCWorld’s common sense precautions you should consider if you do surf a la Google.

We should mention that Google has asked for charitable contributions in lieu of connectivity payments – they only ask that you contribute to a very worthwhile charity, Engineers Without Borders (link below). Come to think of it, a few of our readers could probably contribute an idea or two. Feel free to do so, these folks are only trying to make the world a better place thru brainpower.

In Memoriam, we note the passing of long-time, IFE good guy, Gar Westfal. We knew him and loved the man like everybody else. Want a role model? Try Gar… he was the best!

DALLAS, Aug 21, 2009 /PRNewswire-FirstCall via COMTEX/ — Southwest Airlines and Row 44 are continuing plans to roll out wi-fi beginning in the first quarter of 2010. Beginning this fall, Southwest will be moving to the next step of certifying Southwest’s full fleet with plans to begin fleetwide rollout of the Row 44 satellite service in the first quarter of 2010. The airline has been testing the service on four aircraft since Feb. 2009 and has received fantastic Customer feedback on the product.

“We have concluded our testing for inflight wi-fi and are very happy with both the technical performance of the system and the response of Customers who have used it,” said Dave Ridley, Southwest Airlines Senior Vice President of Marketing and Revenue Management. “We are pleased to be continuing with our plans to offer satellite-enabled broadband access through California-based Row 44.”

“Row 44 is thrilled to be the in-flight wi-fi service of choice for one of the most Customer-focused airlines in the world,” said John Guidon, Row 44 Chief Executive Officer. “We are excited about moving forward and delivering Southwest’s Customers a rich menu of in-flight connectivity and entertainment options.”

During the testing phase, Customers have been utilizing the service for anything from e-mail to streaming video. Those interested in using the service during the test period have had the opportunity to log on to the service via their own personal wi-fi enabled device (laptops, iPhones, wi-fi enabled smart phones, etc). Additionally, the airline has been testing a variety of price points for the service and will continue testing price points through the end of 2009.

Southwest Airlines is the most productive airline in the sky and offers Customers a comfortable traveling experience. Southwest offers a very comfortable ride with all premium leather seats and plenty of legroom with a young all-Boeing 737 fleet. Southwest Airlines (NYSE: LUV), the nation’s largest carrier in terms of domestic passengers enplaned, currently serves 67 cities (with service to Milwaukee starting Nov. 1, 2009) in 34 states. Based in Dallas, Southwest currently operates more than 3,200 flights a day and has more than 35,000 Employees systemwide.

Geneva, Switzerland, 26 May 2009 – EGYPTAIR and OnAir today announced agreement to install full Mobile OnAir and Internet OnAir inflight passenger communications services on their fleet of twin-aisle Airbus 330-300 aircraft. These will be delivered over an 18 month period, starting August 2010, and will operate on European and North American routes as well as in the Middle East.

EGYPTAIR passengers will be able to stay connected inflight using their own mobile phones or smartphones to make and receive phone calls, send and receive text messages and emails, and access the Internet. Using the Internet OnAir service, passengers will be able to access the Internet just as they do on the ground by connecting their laptops either wirelessly or via a wired connection. By OnAir providing both GSM/GPRS as well as Wi-Fi Internet, EGYPTAIR’s passengers will have the broadest range of inflight connectivity options available anywhere in the world today.
EGYPTAIR’s Chairman, Captain Sherif Saad Eldin Galal, said, “We are constantly looking to improve our offering to passengers. This latest technology from OnAir helps us further differentiate our service, and enables our customers to stay in touch with colleagues, family and friends while they travel.”

“OnAir is proud to be working with EGYPTAIR,” said Benoit Debains, CEO of OnAir. “The Mobile OnAir and Internet OnAir services together provide air travellers with a complete solution: a full range of service and the highest levels of performance whether they are using mobile phones, smartphones or their laptops – and with global coverage.”

Mobile OnAir uses the industry’s most advanced and extensive infrastructure for mobile communications, along with Inmarsat SwiftBroadband, high capacity services from Inmarsat 4th generation satellites. This gives EGYPTAIR passengers the best reach and performance available today.

Passenger can use Mobile OnAir to stay in touch as they fly on over 6,000 flights each month, to over 240 cities in over 50 countries across Europe, the Middle East and North Africa. OnAir has operated more than 13,000 fully connected SwiftBroadband flights to date and has signed agreements with more than 15 airlines worldwide.

The EGYPTAIR announcement comes amidst mounting demand for inflight passenger communications. A growing number of commercial airlines and private aviation companies either currently offer OnAir inflight communications services or will offer them in the near future.

OnAir also serves corporate jets, private VIP and Governmental customers.

According to a recent passenger survey, 80% of passengers who have used Mobile OnAir services on selected flights would like these services to be available on every flight.

About EGYPTAIR

EGYPTAIR is the world-renowned national airline of Egypt, based in the cosmopolitan city of Cairo. In more than 76 years, EGYPTAIR has experienced extraordinary growth, taken the lead to be the first airline in the Middle East and Africa and the seventh in the world to join IATA and become a treasured brand.

Throughout its 76 years of service and, as a result of continuous investments, EGYPTAIR has successfully extended its network over the years to reach more than 1,624 weekly departures to 70 cities in 44 countries carrying more than 7.8 million passengers in 2007 /2008 with an increase of 20%. Currently EGYPTAIR has one of the most modern fleets with an average age of eight years which consists of 53 aircraft targeting to reach 75 aircrafts in 2013.

In 2004, EGYPTAIR demonstrated the scale of its commitment to the highest standards of safety by being the first IOSA certified airline in the Middle East and Africa. EGYPTAIR is a Star Alliance member since July 2008.

About OnAir

OnAir is the leading provider of inflight communications, enabling passengers to stay connected during their flight, and airlines to offer new services and generate additional revenues. Present on four of five continents, OnAir provides the only air-travel industry sponsored solution, now available to regular and low-cost airlines, to private and corporate jets, on Airbus and Boeing aircraft, and on long and short-haul flights. OnAir is the only provider of services based on SwiftBroadband, the latest high-bandwidth satellite technology from Inmarsat, which offers GSM and GPRS for voice, data and Internet.

OnAir was incorporated in February 2005 and is owned by SITA, the leading IT solutions provider to the air transport world and Airbus, the leading aircraft manufacturer. OnAir is a member of the GSM Association and an Inmarsat Distribution Partner for SwiftBroadband services.

More information about OnAir is available at www.onair.aero

ORLANDO, Fla., and ITASCA, Ill., May 12 – AirTran Airways, a subsidiary of AirTran Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: AAI), announced today that it will be the first major airline to offer passengers wireless, broadband Internet access on every flight.

AirTran Airways is partnering with Aircell, the leader in airborne communications for business and commercial aviation, to offer passengers full inflight Internet service across its entire fleet of Boeing 737 and 717 aircraft. All 136 AirTran Airways jets will be fully outfitted with Gogo(R) Inflight Internet service by mid-summer.

“Installing Wi-Fi on every one of our aircraft is another great example of what sets AirTran Airways apart from our competitors,” said Bob Fornaro, chairman, president and CEO of AirTran Airways. “Giving business and leisure travelers a consistent, high-quality experience at a low price is a top priority. We feel that Wi-Fi on every flight gives us a distinct competitive advantage over other airlines. Our passengers will know with confidence that no matter which flight they are on, the airplane cabin will be their mobile office, social network, online mall or whatever they want it to be.”

AirTran Airways passengers will have full Internet access including: Web, e-mail, instant messaging and access to corporate e-mail and network systems (virtual private networks) — through their Wi-Fi enabled laptops, smartphones and personal digital assistants (PDAs). Gogo Inflight Internet will be available for a small fee based on the length of the flight. “AirTran is known for catering to the needs of its passengers with style. Both its choice and rapid deployment of Gogo Inflight Internet service are testaments to AirTran’s long-standing commitment to offer the best inflight experience possible,” said Jack Blumenstein, president and CEO of Aircell. “Now that Gogo is here and available, passenger demand has taken off, exceeding even our own expectations. We look forward to enabling AirTran to provide the productivity, entertainment, information and social connectivity its passengers want.”

Installing Wi-Fi on every AirTran aircraft is the latest in a series of features the Company makes available to all passengers. Other features on every AirTran fight include: assigned seating, Business Class, XM Satellite Radio and more than 22 varieties of Coca-Cola products on North America’s newest all-Boeing fleet.

Over the past month, AirTran Airways teased the possibility of Wi-Fi being added to its list of amenities as part of the Company’s everyflight.com advertising campaign. During the campaign, AirTran received more than 30,000 suggestions from interested consumers.

AirTran Airways, a subsidiary of AirTran Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: AAI) and a Fortune 1000 company, has been ranked the number one low cost carrier in the Airline Quality Rating study for the past two years. The airline offers coast-to-coast flights on North America’s newest all-Boeing fleet with Business Class and complimentary XM Satellite Radio on every flight. To book a flight, visit http://www.airtran.com.

Aircell is the world’s leading provider of airborne communications. As winner of an exclusive FCC frequency license in 2006, Aircell has built a revolutionary mobile broadband network for commercial and business aviation. In 2008, the Aircell(R) Network and its inflight portal, Gogo(R), revolutionized the commercial airline passenger flight experience by delivering a robust Internet experience at 35,000 feet. In addition, the Aircell Network provides airlines with connectivity to operations and a path to enhanced cabin services such as video, audio, television and more. A similar feature set is available to Business aircraft operators. Aircell has facilities in Broomfield, Colorado, and Itasca, Illinois. Aircell’s vision is to give everyone the ability to stay in touch, in flight(R). For more information about Aircell, please visit http://www.aircell.com.

Gogo(R), powered by Aircell, turns a commercial airplane into a Wi-Fi hotspot with true inflight Internet access. Passengers with Wi-Fi enabled devices, such as laptops, smartphones and PDAs, can surf the Web, check e-mail, instant message, access a corporate VPN and more. For more information about Gogo, please visit http://www.gogoinflight.com/ or follow Gogo on Twitter: @gogoinflight.

Bonn/Hamburg, 31 March 2009 – T-Mobile presents its inflight communication solution at Aircraft Interiors Expo in Hamburg. Together with its partners, VT Miltope and ViaSat, T-Mobile shows the latest inflight broadband and GSM telephony solution for all major passenger aircraft.

With this solution, connectivity for the traveller can be expanded: With connectivity on the road, on the train or at the airport and now also in the sky the traveller enjoys seamless mobility. Through WiFi Hotspot in aircraft, passengers will have the possibility of broadband access via their own laptop or smartphone during their flight. Complemented by a GSM telephony solution, passengers can use their mobile phones to receive and send both text messages and emails, or do voice calls in exactly the same way as on the ground. Business travellers can stay in touch with their business partners, leisure travellers will be able to receive information on their travel destination and families stay connected with their loved ones. The inflight broadband solution presented in Hamburg with on-board portals can provide airlines with a competitive advantage and allow them to excel in customer services. Through the WiFi portal, passengers will be able to check real-time information quickly for connection flights, browse for onboard shopping products, or utilize loyalty programme incentives.

The combined effort of T-Mobile and its partners result in a unique offering for all airlines: An integrated, future proof connectivity solution that caters to all passenger connectivity and communication needs under one brand. T-Mobile contributes the expertise of a mass market mobile operator and the knowledge of how to design user friendly communication services. This will help ensure that the needs of the end-customer will be satisfied. T-Mobile’s sophisticated billing system will allow airlines to implement various payment methods. Interface with the airlines’ loyalty programs will also be possible. With these capabilities T-Mobile is able to accommodate the increasing demand by airlines for a worry-free end-to-end in-flight connectivity solution.

T-Mobile’s initiative is driven by a clear vision of tomorrow’s inflight entertainment situation. Passengers are expecting universal connectivity for all their phones and devices, bandwidth like at home and an intuitive user experience. Instead of offline in-seat devices, customers want to use the services and information they are used to for making flights as entertaining and efficient as possible.