Gogo posted better than anticipated numbers for Q2 '18 this morning, giving the company's share price a nice boost in early morning trading, though it has since given back some of the gains. The business aviation segment continues to lead the company's fortunes but some glimmers of success in the commercial segments are showing, too. So long as American Airlines is excluded from all considerations.
Inmarsat reported its first half financial results this morning in London with one surprising bit of data: The GX commercial aviation service finally started generating airtime revenue is Q2 '18, more than a year after entering service on some commercial aircraft.
Just how many aircraft carry inflight connectivity hardware? And which kit?? A pair of announcements this week gives greater insight into which kit is where and how the market is shifting, rapidly in some cases. Not that installation number 1000 matters more than number 999, of course. Yet somehow it does. Just a little.
The UON inflight connectivity service from Saudi Arabia’s Taqnia Space will offer service from Europe to Asia thanks to a new deal with Eutelsat to add Ku-band capacity. The deal brings Ku-band widebeam coverage spanning Europe, the Middle East and South Asia plus an additional HTS transponder with coverage flexibility. The company is scaling up strong, but will it be enough to succeed in a crowded market?
Thales InFlyt has a new boss. Philippe Carette takes over from Dominique Giannoni to run the IFE/C portion of the company effective immediately.
Alitalia’s struggles continue. The carrier still needs a fresh infusion of cash to pay off the bridge loan from the Italian government and some sort of long-term plan. And, for the latter, Alitalia will soon find itself forced to be more independent than it is today. Ouch.
Finnair joins the rapidly growing collection of European airlines offering inflight internet connectivity on its regional flights. Thanks to Viasat and Eutelsat passengers can now connect on some flights with more aircraft coming online over the coming year.
Earlier this month EASA issued an Airworthiness Directive affecting certain of Gogo's 2Ku inflight connectivity installations. Air vortices created by the 2Ku radome cause excessive vibration in the ELT antenna, potentially shaking it loose or causing structural issues in the fuselage. Fortunately the issue was discovered relatively quickly, the number of aircraft affected is low and a revised installation process is expected to be in place in the near future.
Gogo plans significant cost cuts as it seeks to shore up its financial position. Facing a financing crunch the company's "Gogo 2020" business plan unveiled this week will see hundreds of millions of dollars cut from cost side of the balance sheet as jobs and programs are dropped from the company.
Caribbean Airlines passengers will soon have an inflight entertainment option available. Streaming “BYOD” service from Bluebox will launch on 1 August 2018.