Putting flat bed seats in single-aisle aircraft is hardly a new phenomenon. As the planes fly farther and passengers appear willing to pay for increased comfort that trend will likely continue, with seat manufacturers continuing to innovate in the space. Or, perhaps, taking a step backwards from time to time.
What’s the best way to share news that the launch product is going to be delayed a bit? Tying it in as an afterthought to $25 million in additional funding definitely helps. For upstart inflight connectivity provider SmartSky the news this week is a mix of good and bad.
Vistara is making a bid to be the first Indian airline with inflight connectivity installed. The carrier is reportedly partnering with Nelco, a local satellite services provider, to bring the service online. Neither party is confirming the deal, though Indian regulators confirmed that applications were processed and permits issued.
Fully flat beds are coming to the Asian LCC market in mid-2020. But that’s about the only thing exciting in the new ZIPAir cabin configuration unveiled last week. And some of the finer details straddle the line between disappointing and concerning.
Some passengers on Spanish leisure carrier evelop! have a new inflight entertainment option on board. The Turista Plus (premium) cabin on the carrier’s A350s is now stocked with InflightVR headsets to help entertain passengers traveling between Spain and the Caribbean.
Finally some good news worth celebrating in the ESA space. Gilat’s new kit went flying on Honeywell’s 757 and successfully linked with a Telesat GEO Ka-band satellite.
More troubles for the Spirit Airlines inflight wifi program came to light today. Antenna issues with the Thales FlytLIVE kit will require the few existing installations to be replaced and tested anew before the full fleet deployment resumes.
Gaining access to more radio spectrum for inflight wifi connectivity is a rare event. A recent agreement by the ITU that boosts the available Ka-band satellite frequency range 400% is a massive win that should begin to pay off in mid-2020.
Electric aircraft are really real and the Embraer E2 family is complete. Plus a ton of good news for Airbus and an incremental eventual win for inflight connectivity.
Panasonic Avionics (PAC) plans a significant boost to its Ku-band satellite capacity from 2022. The company confirmed a contract for multiple gigahertz of capacity on both multi-beam payloads of the Eutelsat 10B satellite slated for launch in three years.