With the “completion of all technical milestones and the opening of the first fully operational coverage zone,” the SmartSky in-flight connectivity network is beginning to come online. Route-based flight demonstrations can be performed, marking a major pivot point as it moves towards certification and commercial launch.
Spirit Airlines is now online in the sky. The first few planes fitted with the company’s in-flight wifi connectivity offering recently entered service for passenger use, though a formal launch is not expected until later this year.
Global Eagle is moving closer to a Ka-band in-flight connectivity solution. The company recently cleared a critical milestone in the verification phase for the Global Eagle Airconnect Ka IFC terminal to be used with Canadian satellite operator Telesat’s planned Lightspeed low-earth orbit (LEO) network.
Fast, free, FlyFi wifi on board every flight is a key value proposition from JetBlue. The carrier’s new A220 fleet features the same Viasat-powered satellite connectivity as the older aircraft, but how it came to be on the planes is a bit different from prior deliveries.
Delta Air Lines will launch its new, Viasat-powered in-flight connectivity era this weekend. The first A321ceo equipped with the Ka-band satellite connectivity gear expects to enter regular scheduled service on 1 May.
Getting a 5G air-to-ground network into service in the USA is a tough task, with schedules continuing to slip and questions about the hardware involved. But in China the new services are expected to launch soon, and expand quickly. Powered by Chinese manufacturer ZTE, a new network could be online in a matter of months.
Getting a new ATG network into service was never going to be easy. Can new CTO David Classen push SmartSky across the finish line, addressing the tower technical challenges along the way?
Chapter 11 is disappearing quickly from the rear view mirror. Satellite launches resumed and the constellation continues to grow. And earlier this month a new deal regarding an in-flight connectivity terminal and antenna solution helped buoy the company’s position further. To say that OneWeb is on a roll lately might be a massive understatement.
The Ides of March proved challenging in the upper ranks of SmartSky’s leadership. At least two members of the company’s senior leadership team appear to be affected by the changes.
Officially slipping the Gogo 5G network into 2022 from this year is not great news, but Gogo’s overall finances emerged from 2020 stronger than expected and the next 5 years should complete the transformation.