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Honeywell and Inmarsat to bring high-speed Wi-Fi to airplanes

Zafirah Salim | June 19, 2015
GX Aviation completes in-flight testing; confirming high-speed Ka-band connectivity.

Honeywell Aerospace and Inmarsat have successfully completed the first phase of hardware and satellite network flight tests for GX Aviation broadband services.

In this project, Honeywell's JetWave-branded hardware was used to enable airplanes to connect to Inmarsat's Global Xpress satellite constellation for GX Aviation global Ka-band in-flight Wi-Fi services.

The tests, which included streaming YouTube videos and live radio, online conference calls, downloading files and more, were conducted in the U.K. in June 2015 - validating GX Aviation's ability to deliver high-speed Wi-Fi connectivity while over land and water.

It demonstrated a successful connection between the JetWave hardware and Inmarsat's first Global Xpress satellite, I-5 F1, which powers GX Aviation services for Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia. This follows the ground-based high-speed and performance tests completed in March 2015.

"We are on the cusp of a new era of connectivity in the skies, and the successful testing of our JetWave hardware with Inmarsat's GX Aviation network is a critical step in getting this service ready for public use," said Jack Jacobs, vice president of Safety and Connectivity at Honeywell Aerospace. "Airlines, passengers and pilots continue to demand better, more consistent and faster in-flight Wi-Fi to make their jobs easier and travel experience better. The successful results of the recent tests signify that Honeywell and Inmarsat will soon satisfy these demands."

Leo Mondale, Inmarsat Aviation president, added that with GX Aviation, airlines and their passenges can experience a connectivity service equivalent to what they are used to on the ground.

Sharing more about this project, Mondale said that Honeywell, Inmarsat and iDirect are working very closely to bring GX to market.

"This is the coming together of the first part of the eco-system. Next step is announcing our line-fit arrangements. And we will be standing behind our value-added reseller partners to support them to meet the needs of their airline customers; ensuring airlines have a choice of service providers to meet their individual needs for in the cabin," he concluded.


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