AeroMobile says that more than 50% of its airline partners now offer 3G mobile connectivity, representing around 6,500 flights.
The airlines include Lufthansa, Etihad, SAS and Singapore Airlines.
AeroMobile CEO Kevin Rogers said that more passengers are using the service on aircraft equipped with 3G and the usage of data and SMS text messaging has almost doubled.
He added that 2017 will see more aircraft install the 3G service, enabling more and more passengers to connect and use their mobile devices in the cabin.
Singapore Airlines first 3G-equipped aircraft – an Airbus A350 – entered into service in May 2016. Previously the airline had offered inflight mobile connectivity on selected Airbus A380s and Boeing 777-300ERs.
AeroMobile says further A350s with 3G connectivity have entered service.
Other 3G milestones include:
- The first Air Serbia 3G-connected trans-Atlantic aircraft flew from Belgrade to JFK in New York in June 2016,
- Cathay Pacific, Hong Kong’s premier airline launched 3G AeroMobile in June 2016,
- Etihad’s Boeing 787-9s are also fitted with 3G connectivity.
The AeroMobile 3G service, which allows passengers to use their mobile phones in flight, and works with owner Panasonic Avionics’ Ku-band satellite solution, now gives passengers another connectivity option.
Since launching 3G inflight connectivity one year ago, AeroMobile has also revealed a 160 percent increase in inflight data usage year on year.
AeroMobile has revealed a significant uptake of mobile data usage by holidaymakers and business travellers throughout 2016.
In its first year 3G has helped AeroMobile achieve:
- 160 percent increase in inflight mobile data usage
- 22 percent increase in inflight users
- 14 percent increase in sent SMS
“It seems like a paradox to give people the choice between 3G or Wi-Fi, but it does give them different options,” Kevin Rogers, AeroMobile CEO, told “Get Connected’s” Steve Nichols at last October’s Apex Expo in Singapore.
“The 3G service is simple to use. Passengers simply turn on their mobile device to connect to the network and are billed directly by their mobile operator. Prices are comparable to international roaming rates,” he said.
The 3G service allows passengers to use their mobile devices to text and browse the internet inflight. Offering 3G connectivity means a faster service and an experience much closer to that on the ground.
But why would they choose to use 3G instead of using Wi-Fi?
“If a passengers just wants to send one email or a Tweet 3G could prove better than Wi-Fi for them, especially if they have a bundled international roaming package,” said Rogers