SmartSky has stood up its first fully operational coverage zone—a large contiguous portion of Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina—for its air-to-ground broadband network, it said late last week. This enables route-based flight demonstrations for business jets and turboprops and puts the company closer to certification and commercial launch in most of the continental U.S. later this year.
“While our primary goal remains lighting up the remainder of the nationwide network in the coming months, we are now showcasing the inflight networking capabilities and services that SmartSky is bringing to market for the connected aircraft ecosystem of operators, manufacturers, service providers, and passengers,” said SmartSky CEO David Helfgott.
Months of successful field testing have ensured that the entire system performs to specification, SmartSky noted. Technical milestones achieved include seamless site-to-site handover across varying speeds, altitudes, and ranges with high data throughput above both rural and urban areas. “SmartSky’s patented beamforming and spectrum reuse technologies successfully performed across sectors and sites throughout the entire corridor, proving the novel network’s design functions well,” the company said.