Wi-Fi on a plane: More Boeing aircraft get wireless, mobile access

Wi-Fi on a plane: More Boeing aircraft get wireless, mobile access

Summary: Boeing is to equip more of its aircraft with Wi-Fi and cellular access from next year, meaning less offline time for passengers.

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TOPICS: Networking, Wi-Fi
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Boeing is to add in-flight Wi-Fi and mobile connectivity to more of its planes, meaning more travellers will be able to get online while they travel.

The company, which already equips its 737s with kit that allows airlines to offer on-board Wi-Fi and cellular access, will also begin kitting out its 747-8 and 777 by the end of 2013, it announced on Thursday.

Boeing's 787 aircraft can also currently be retrofitted with Wi-Fi, and the range should get "a full set of connectivity offerings as part of its standard catalogue" by the end of this year, the company said.

All new Boeing planes will have the option of providing wireless media streaming in 2014.

The worldwide market for in-flight Wi-Fi services is expected to hit $1.85bn by 2018, according to research company Global Industry Analysts.

Among the latest airlines to announce plans to add Wi-Fi to their onboard offerings is US carrier JetBlue, which said this week it will introduce Wi-Fi to its aircraft in 2013. Elsewhere, Delta Airlines is planning to expand wireless access to its long-haul international fleet next year while Norwegian Airlines recently added Wi-Fi to 46 of its planes and is scheduled to do the same for its entire fleet before the end of this year. 

Topics: Networking, Wi-Fi

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9 comments
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  • If I'm on a plane

    Then I don't want to be disturbed. In other words my phone will be off. If you're having issues with your Windows Junk, take it o Geek Squad, they'll be happy to charge you $200 an hour to "maybe" fix it.
    Troll Hunter J
  • If I'm on a plane

    Then I don't want to be disturbed. In other words my phone will be off. If you're having issues with your Windows Junk, take it o Geek Squad, they'll be happy to charge you $200 an hour to "maybe" fix it.
    Troll Hunter J
  • If I'm on a plane

    Then I don't want to be disturbed. In other words my phone will be off. If you're having issues with your Windows Junk, take it o Geek Squad, they'll be happy to charge you $200 an hour to "maybe" fix it.
    Troll Hunter J
    • get it right the third time?

      maybe a fourth is in order
      cwallen19803@...
  • WiFi Interference to 737 NG Honeywell Display Unit March 2011

    See http://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/wi-fi-interference-with-honeywell-avionics-prompts-boeing-354179/

    excerpt:
    Honeywell Phase 3 Display Units (DUs) have shown themselves susceptible to "blanking" during airline electro magnetic interference (EMI) certification testing of wireless broadband systems (Wi-Fi) on various Boeing 737NG airplanes, prompting Boeing to cease linefit installs of in-flight connectivity systems across its portfolio, including widebody aircraft.

    Multiple sources tell ATI and Flightgloal that the blanking occurred during EMI testing for Aircell's Gogo in-flight Internet supplemental type certificate on 737NG aircraft. Aircell has
    ka5s@...
    • Re: WiFi Interference to 737 NG Honeywell Display Unit ...

      Strange, isn't it, that no consumer-grade display (e.g. TV set, computer monitor) has EVER had a problem with "blanking" due to anyone using wi-fi or 3G anywhere nearby, yet this expensive, industrial-strength bit of safety-critical equipment goes titsup when a little mobile phone just so much as squints at it.

      Makes me wonder about quality control, it really does...
      ldo17
  • Ignorance is bliss.

    1. Why do you think they hold compliance testing?
    2. Why do you think that after the 18months since the FlightGlobal article was written, engineers have not fixed the problem?
    3. @ldo17. Why do you think that you haven't heard of TVs having a problem? Maybe testing failures in a new TV for the consumer market are not as newsworthy as those in a video monitor in an aircraft?
    FiberLover
  • The truly important part that wasn't stated...

    what that there will be PAY WiFi on a plane. The FAA is under tremendous pressure to allow WiFi because airlines have run out of every other means of milking customers (short of putting coin slots on the bathroom doors).
    Tony Burzio
    • just you wait

      there will be customers using the isles to save a quarter
      cwallen19803@...