Inmarsat says that International Airlines Group (IAG) has confirmed its intention to install its European Aviation Network (EAN) high-speed, inflight passenger connectivity service on up to 341 of its narrowbody aircraft across all of the Group’s airlines.
IAG stated that it is planning to deploy the EAN service on the first of its aircraft, a British Airways Airbus A321, in the summer of 2017.
The 341 IAG short-haul aircraft will include 132 from British Airways, 125 from Vueling, 45 from Iberia and 39 from Aer Lingus.
Willie Walsh, IAG’s Chief Executive, said: “We are giving our customers the fastest connectivity you can get on any aircraft. Having announced Wi-Fi for long-haul flights earlier this year we are now equipping our airlines’ short-haul fleets with inflight broadband access.
“Connectivity is essential because it’s what our customers demand and IAG will be the first European airline group to offer high-quality air to ground Wi-Fi on short-haul flights.”
IAG and European Aviation Network
Leo Mondale, President of Inmarsat Aviation, said: “The European Aviation Network is a game changer for the millions of airline passengers that have been cut-off from fast, reliable and consistent broadband access during flights in Europe.
“It will provide IAG airlines with unprecedented high-speed capacity by combining the strengths of Inmarsat’s satellite connectivity with a powerful ground network operated by our partner Deutsche Telekom.
“We look forward to working with Aer Lingus, British Airways, Iberia and Vueling on the rollout”.
Inmarsat says EAN is a revolutionary, combined-connectivity platform that will provide to airline passengers flying anywhere in Europe broadband connectivity of unparalleled quality and speed; equivalent to the mobile broadband service consumers experience on the ground.
The network will seamlessly combine Inmarsat’s new dedicated S-band satellite with a new 4G LTE mobile terrestrial network.