United Continental have today announced that it has selected Panasonic Avionics Corporation to provide Wi-Fi connectivity on more than 300 United Airlines and Continental Airlines mainline aircraft beginning in mid-2012.
The Panasonic Ku-band satellite technology offers faster speed than air-to-ground technology (ATG) and will provide connectivity on flights worldwide. The system will also enable wireless streaming of video content.
“Our customers tell us they value Wi-Fi,” said Jim Compton, United’s executive vice president and chief revenue officer.
“As a global carrier, we selected satellite-based Ku-band technology to enable customers to stay connected on long-haul overseas flights, something no other U.S.-based international carrier currently offers.”
Paul Margis, chief executive officer for Panasonic Avionics Corporation said, “Panasonic is honored that United Continental Holdings selected our Global Communications Suite for more than 300 aircraft in its domestic and international fleets. United Continental Holdings has an exciting vision about how to leverage Ku technology within its fleets, and we are thrilled to be working with them on a connectivity experience that sets a new standard in in-flight entertainment and communications.”
United Continental expects to install the Panasonic system on Airbus A319 and A320 aircraft and Boeing 747, 757, 767, 777 and 787 aircraft. Customers will be able to use their wireless devices such as laptops, smart phones and tablets onboard those aircraft to connect with internet service using the in-flight hotspot.
United Continental expects the entire Airbus and Boeing mainline fleet will be equipped with Wi-Fi by 2015. Continental Airlines previously announced plans to install satellite-based Wi-Fi on more than 200 DIRECTV®-equipped aircraft beginning in 2012.