As passengers demand more broadband capacity and faster in-fight Internet service, Gogo is moving as fast as it can to change its airline Wi-Fi service from ground-based to satellite-based links.
The company said this week that the number of commercial aircraft equipped with its 2Ku broadband satellite technology has just passed the 500 mark, up from 100 at the beginning of this year. That’s out of a total of 3,000 Gogo-equipped planes. Orders for 2Ku installations now exceed 2,000 aircraft, the company said.
Where is 2Ku being installed, and how do you know if your aircraft has it?
“In the US, most of these are with Delta, and they inform passengers before boarding through their app and email notifications,” a spokesman tells Travelskills. “They also have ‘high speed Internet’ signs at the boarding door, as well as branding on their portal. With other airline partners like GOL, 2Ku is the only technology offered.”
Gogo said it takes about 30 hours to install the satellite-based technology on an aircraft – less than half the time it normally takes to install a broadband link.
In recent months, the company installed 2Ku on Delta’s first new Airbus A350; won regulatory approval to install 2Ku technology on Boeing 777s; signed a deal with Alaska Airlines to put 2Ku on all of the airline’s Airbus and Boeing aircraft; won a contract from LATAM Airlines Brazil to put satellite connections on 100 of its A320s; finished installing satellite Wi-Fi links on all of Virgin Atlantic’s A330s, A340s and 747s; and finalized an agreement with Cathay Pacific Group to put the technology on Cathay Pacific and Cathay Dragon wide-bodies, including A330s and 777s.
By the way, there’s one other way to tell if your aircraft has Gogo 2Ku Wi-Fi: There’s a distinctive little dome on top of the plane.
“2Ku is the best performing connectivity solution in the market and that performance has resulted in the technology becoming the most rapidly adopted broadband satellite connectivity solution in the history of commercial aviation,” said Michael Small, Gogo’s president and CEO. “While we continue to grow our backlog of 2Ku aircraft, we are also focused operationally on making sure 2Ku also becomes the most rapidly deployed technology in commercial aviation history.”
Has your inflight wi-fi experience improved in recent months? Please leave your comments below.
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