SmartSky Signs JetSuiteX for Air-to-ground Service

 - February 4, 2019, 10:30 AM

JetSuiteX has selected SmartSky Networks to provide airborne connectivity services for its fleet of Embraer ERJ-135s that fly to seven destinations in California and Nevada, using private terminals. JetSuiteX currently is equipped with Gogo connectivity; its JetSuite business jet charter fleet is also Gogo equipped, but will remain with the Gogo setup.

SmartSky’s network, which will cover the contiguous U.S., will be available for the launch of service with JetSuiteX in late summer, according to SmartSky. The onboard connectivity service will be rolled out in phases until the entire fleet is SmartSky-equipped.

JetSuiteX co-founder and CEO Alex Wilcox evaluated the SmartSky service in flight as part of the selection process. “We chose SmartSky’s high-speed technology because it delivers the most compelling user experience,” he said.

The SmartSky service deploys “a mix of 4G LTE and emerging 5G technologies,” according to the company, allowing users to stream video, send and receive emails with attachments, and transmit large data files.

SmartSky is in discussions with companies to develop the supplemental type certificate (STC) for the ERJ-135 installation but hasn’t yet announced which company has been selected. The STC will be available for other ERJ-135 operators, according to SmartSky.