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British Airways flights to be equipped with 70 Mbps WiFi soon

31.05.2016 at 02:29

Travel news

More than 100 British Airways planes will be equipped with high-speed internet connections. The airline, along with Iberia and Aer Lingus, has signed a deal with technology company Gogo to provide inflight connections with speeds comparable to ground-based broadband. The technology, called 2Ku, claims to be able to provide up to 70Mbps internet speeds while planes are in the air and will be installed on some BA planes from 2017.

The higher speeds will let passengers connect to more services including video streaming services, such as Netflix. The 70Mbps connection would be split amongst those connecting on the flight, meaning actual speeds on individual devices will vary depending on how many people connect. The 2Ku technology uses two antennas – one sends signals to the aircraft and the other sends the signal back down to the ground. It also utilises a number of satellites to provide the extra bandwidth.

A number of BA Airbus models will be fitted with the technology, as well as 747s, 777s, and 787s. The Boeing 777-200 will get the most installations, with 46 aircraft being fitted with the broadband system.

The airlines involved in the connectivity deal are all members of the International Airlines Group (IAG) and by 2019, the organisation expects 90 per cent of its long-haul flights to have similar high-speed connections. Gogo’s technology is currently installed on 2,500 commercial and 6,800 business airlines in the US, but inflight Wi-Fi is becoming more commonplace elsewhere. “In the future, inflight Wi-Fi will also transform the duty free experience allowing travellers to order from their phones and tablets and arrange for items purchased on board to be delivered to their homes,” the IAG said in a statement.

Source: Wired

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