Passengers experience an interruption of in-flight high speed connectivity during take-off and landing below an altitude of 10,000 feet. This interruption is due to the system’s necessity to switch between connectivity systems in air-to-ground scenarios.
Despite the FAA’s new ruling since 2013 enabling airlines to expand the use of portable electronic devices during flights, approx. 50% of traditional service provider’s networks require heavy reengineering to allow for non-stop connectivity functionality onboard an aircraft.
The cost benefits are challenging despite passengers would benefit from at least 20 to 30 more minutes per flight increased use of laptops and tablets.
Smiths Interconnect's KuStream™ technology, a network agnostic Ku broadband antenna system avoids the typical in-flight Wi-Fi Blackout below 10,000 feet due to its industry-leading geographical skew angle range and precision horn array aperture design with integrated feeding network.
Its superior performance and reliability enables maximum satellite network data rates and footprint usage, resulting in fewer satellites required for network operation and therefore reducing operator costs significantly.
The longer window of available Wi-Fi usage increases the benefit of the service to passengers, and gives Carriers the opportunity to present a richer entertainment offering, especially for shorter flights.
After its launch in 2009, Smiths’ KuStream™ 1000 antenna systems are now serving millions of passengers worldwide with over 1000 installations and over 15 million flight hours.
As the install base keeps growing domestically and internationally on commercial airline platforms, Smiths has since then further invested in the refinement of its well proven and successful technology and expanded its offering to the regional aircraft and business jet segment with its KaStream 5000 antenna solution.
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