13 MARCH 2017
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Mobile satellite communications provider Inmarsat last week named International Airlines Group (IAG) as the launch customer for its European Aviation Network (EAN) high-speed in-flight broadband service.
Inmarsat, which will operate the service jointly with its partner Deutsche Telekom, hailed the contract as “a flagship achievement in our Inmarsat’s strategy to revolutionise the on-board experience for airline passengers with purpose-built next-generation connectivity solutions”.
EAN allows European passengers to use personal devices for internet browsing, video streaming, gaming and other online services, with high-capacity and low-latency performance.
“EAN’s robust and ultra-compact technology makes it uniquely qualified for the European airspace, where aircraft size, flight density and frequent aircraft manoeuvring are challenging to broadband satellite-only systems,” Inmarsat added.
The system is claimed to be the first in the world to integrate connectivity from a satellite, operated by Inmarsat, and a complementary LTE-based ground network, operated by Deutsche Telekom.
Inmarsat said IAG plans to equip in excess of 300 aircraft with EAN and aims to have 90% of its short-haul fleet complete by early 2019.
President Leo Mondale said: “Demand for in-flight broadband has never been stronger and our cutting-edge technology will remain the market’s gold standard for a long time to come.”
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