Nokia found a new opportunity to deploy its air-to-ground inflight connectivity hardware. The company behind the ground station antennae for Inmarsat’s European Aviation Network secured a deal with EE, part of the British Telecom group, to deploy a nationwide, dedicated, airborne communications network for Great Britain’s emergency services.
Riding high on the launch of the European Aviation Network earlier this year, plans are afoot to expand the air-to-ground (ATG) inflight connectivity coverage footprint. Leading that charge is a company few have heard of, in large part because it did not exist until earlier this year. SkyFive, spun off from Nokia's core business, is now running projects in at least three other markets, with one network online for testing today. CEO Thorsten Robrecht spoke with PaxEx.Aero on the sidelines of the World Aviation Festival in London this week, keen to celebrate the early accomplishments with EAN, but also to highlight significant future potential for the technology on a global scale.
The Inmarsat EAN inflight wifi connectivity network is fully built out. Aircraft installations are underway. So, where will we find the aircraft sporting the kit and when will it enter commercial service? Some answers are starting to show up.