Aircell said its Gogo Biz service–launched in 2009 as an Internet-only service for the business aviation market–is expanding to include voice capabilities that will allow crewmembers and passengers to text and call in flight from their own smartphones, using their existing mobile numbers, starting October 1.
Constant Aviation has been awarded an Aircell dealership at its Las Vegas location. “With the expansion of our Las Vegas location at the end of last year, we wanted to provide our customers with the same service as our other locations. As the demand grows for in-flight Wi-Fi options, we knew the addition of an Aircell dealership for the new location was imperative,” said Derek Morris, avionics modification manager at Constant Aviation.
Satcom Direct has signed an agreement with Honeywell to be a distributor for the Inmarsat GX Aviation Ka-band service, for which Honeywell itself is a value-added reseller. The Florida-based communications specialist will also be a distributor of GX avionics equipment. The service is scheduled to be commercially available early in 2015 and is designed to offer “consistent, high-capacity broadband coverage around the world.” For example, users should be able to stream Internet content live or hold uninterrupted video calls from 30,000 feet.
Fort Lauderdale, Fla.-based Banyan Air Service is offering upgrade solutions for the more than 1,100 operators flying with Magnastar equipment. The Magnastar is a legacy in-flight telephone system found in most GIIIs and GIVs, Challenger 601s through 604s and some Falcons, Brian Wilson, Banyan director of avionics, told AIN.
The era of the Airfone air-to-ground radiotelephone system comes to an end on December 31 when Aircell, the new owner of the Airfone network, plans to shut the service down. Aircell purchased the Airfone network from LiveTV earlier this year and will use the Airfone frequencies to expand and meet growing demand for its Gogo and Gogo Biz airborne broadband Internet services. The Airfone frequencies are adjacent to those used by the Gogo service.
Elkhart, Ind.-based charter operator Travel Management is installing Aircell’s Gogo Biz high-speed Internet service across its entire fleet of 70 Hawker 400XPs and 800XPs. It expects installations of the system to be completed by October. The company began introducing Gogo Biz aboard its 800XPs last year.
Honeywell has entered the detailed design phase of the satellite communications (satcom) system hardware it is developing for Inmarsat’s new Global Xpress Ka-band satellite network. The company aims to secure Inmarsat network access approval for the satcom system in 2014.
Montreal, Canada-based Innotech Aviation (Booth 1115) announced here at EBACE 2013 the successful installation and certification of a dual Ku/SatTV system on a Bombardier Global jet. Called the I-Ku Diamond system, the installation offers Global operators simultaneous operation of satellite TV, Ku-band satellite high-speed broadband service, voice over IP and other office-in-the-sky applications. Speeds average 1.5 Mbps with options to select even faster speeds.
Satcom Direct (Booth 455) has signed an agreement with Honeywell to be a distributor for the Inmarsat GX Aviation Ka-band service, for which Honeywell itself is a value-added reseller. The Florida-based communications specialist will also be a distributor of GX avionics equipment. The service is scheduled to be commercially available early in 2015 and is designed to offer “consistent, high-capacity broadband coverage around the world.” For example, users should be able to stream Internet content live or hold uninterrupted video calls from 30,000 feet.
Inmarsat and partner Honeywell are poised to launch what Inmarsat describes as the “game-changing Global Xpress aviation service,” that will ultimately provide high-capacity broadband coverage and worldwide data transfer rates of up to 50 mbps.
Inmarsat (Booth 921), a major player in mobile satellite communication services, offered a preview of GX Aviation at the Aircraft Interiors Expo in Hamburg, Germany, last month.