Middle East air passengers can soon look forward to using their personal cell phones in flight. Mobile phone technology specialist OnAir of Geneva, Switzerland, will begin tests on the commercial use of mobile phones aboard TAP Portugal Airbus A321s later this year. According to OnAir CEO George Cooper, Gulf state airlines will likely be among the first to offer the service.
Widespread testing has proven that new technology allows for in-flight use of cell phones without disrupting terrestrial networks. Now developers face the challenge of winning airworthiness approval for the systems and the licenses to use the relevant frequencies.
The partnership established last year between Garuda Indonesia and Germany’s Lufthansa Systems reached its first milestone earlier this month with the implementation of 0e-ticketing for the Jakarta-based carrier.
EMS Technologies will supply broadband satcom system hardware for OnAir’s in-flight cellphone and Internet service through a collaboration with Thales.
The deal could be worth up to $30 million to EMS Satcom over the next five years. The company produces Inmarsat communications terminals, internal cards and antennas.
Thales is demonstrating its “world first” regional aircraft in-flight entertainment (IFE) system for the first time here at Farnborough International on the Embraer 190.
The Top Series i-4500 IFE installation is claimed to be unique in that the IFE server is located in the rear of the aircraft instead of under passenger seats, saving considerable space.
Preparing for the day when aircraft passengers are allowed to make cellphone calls in flight, Arinc and Telenor have created AeroMobile, a new service that the companies say will make such calling routine for airline and business aircraft passengers.
As anyone who has flown aboard a private jet can attest, whiling away the time en route with a good book, sampling the catering or just engaging in some quiet conversation with cabin mates can make for an entirely enjoyable experience aloft.
Three years ago satellite direct television was “gee whiz” equipment. Today it is almost standard on anything larger than a Falcon 50. Honeywell, with its AIS-2000 multi-region system, provides in-flight coverage in Europe, the Middle East and North America. But best of all, the modular cabinet design now allows the user to download software modules to shift from one coverage area to another in flight.
AeroMobile, a joint venture of Arinc and Telenor now planning the introduction of cellphone services for the cabin, last month announced that it is taking a “global role” in convincing communications regulatory agencies in the U.S. and Europe to allow the use of personal mobile phones after takeoff.
Coming just one month after it announced receipt of the supplemental type certificate (STC) for installation of its Broad Band Multi-Link (BBML) high-speed data system in the G500 and G550, Gulfstream Aerospace announced at EBACE it had received approval for installation of the high-speed data system in the G450 and G350, its fourth such STC. The first installation of the system on a customer G450 will be completed next month.