Gogo, which offers in-flight connectivity and wireless in-flight digital entertainment solutions, announced Monday that it has launched its next generation connectivity technology – ATG-4 – on three airlines: Delta Air Lines, US Airways and Virgin America.
The service is expected to increase capacity to the plane, which will allow more passengers to access the Internet with a more consistent browsing experience.
Currently, Gogo has installed the service on more than 25 domestic aircraft. Virgin America was the first airline to install the new technology and currently plans to roll out the service on more aircraft in the months ahead, according to Gogo.
Meanwhile, leading aircraft maker Airbus has revealed its vision of something called “Concept Planes” that will flock along ‘express skyways’ to cut time and emissions. Intelligent planes that are propelled into the air, flock in formation and fly ‘express skyways’ could cut time, delays, stress and emissions, according to Airbus experts. (Read: Airbus Reveals the Future of Flight in Smarter Skies)
In addition to Delta Airlines, US Airways and Virgin America, Gogo is expected to launch ATG-4 service on American Airlines and United’s p.s. fleet in 2013.
Gogo’s ATG-4 technology is capable of delivering a peak speed of 9.8 Mbps, triple the peak speed of 3.1 Mbps enabled by the previous air-to-ground network.
The new technology includes three features: the addition of directional antennas and dual modems on each aircraft and the deployment of EV-DO Rev. B technology on Gogo’s airborne and ground networks.
“This significant step in Gogo’s technology roadmap allows us to better address the demand for in-air connectivity services,” said Michael Small, Gogo’s president and chief executive officer. “We continue to find ways to implement new technologies that bring more bandwidth to the aero market.”
Gogo expects to roll out ATG-4 at a rapid pace, with hundreds of aircraft installations planned before the end of 2013.
Aircraft installations of the new technology will typically take place overnight and will require the installation of two antennas, one on each side of the aircraft, installation of a second modem and a software upgrade. Gogo’s more than 150 land based cellular towers have already been modified for the new technology, says the company.