You’re flying across the country for a vacation or important meeting, and you want to read and reply to email along the way. Unfortunately, the in-flight broadband is oversaturated and so slow you can barely crawl along. Thanks to a recent approval from the Federal Aviation Administration, that problem will soon be a thing of the past on Gogo broadband-equipped flights.
A massive speed boost
In-flight broadband provider Gogo has unveiled new 2Ku technology that’s been approved by the FAA, and that technology will boost data speeds up to 70Mbps. According to a report from Macworld, seven unnamed commercial airlines have already signed up for either a trial or fleet deployment of 2Ku, which will roll out to more than 500 aircraft next year.
Today vs. tomorrow
The current maximum data speed Gogo is able to offer is a mere 3.1Mbps, shared among all the passengers on the same flight. This is the reason your data speeds are so slow on aircraft equipped with the technology, but the new 2Ku system should give you a major speed boost. The bandwidth will still be shared with your fellow passengers, but there will be more of it to go around.
What will it cost?
Gogo says the new technology will be cheaper to install and run, but will that mean less expensive costs to use it? From the reports we are hearing, probably not, but it could mean more aircraft get the antennas installed. Right now, Gogo offers Internet service on Air Canada, Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, Delta, United, and Virgin America flights. The available data plans include a day pass for $16 and an unlimited monthly plan for $59.95.
The FAA has been getting better about staying up-to-date with technology and passenger needs. It’s great to see the possibility of improved data speeds on airline flights, since so many of us lead busy lifestyles that can’t sit on hold for the three or more hours a flight across the country or around the world might take. With the new, faster broadband technology, you’ll be better equipped to stay productive on those flights.