Leading IFEC company Global Eagle has expressed a huge vote of confidence in Israeli company Gilat to the tune of $5m. Last week, Global Eagle placed an order for Gilat’s Wavestream high power transceiver (HPT) for support of inflight connectivity solutions.
Gilat subsidy Wavestream has been a part of its stable since 2010, when the company was bought for $130m. Specialists in solid-state power amplifiers for satellites, the tie up between Gilat and Wavestream was clearly beneficial to both businesses.
The Wavestream transceivers are high power, 25 Watt Ku-band products. Described as the ‘lightest, most efficient and compact product’ of its type, it’s a great choice for integrating into an onboard WiFi solution.
Bob Huffman, Wavestream’s General Manager, commented in a press release,
“We are pleased to support Global Eagle as they continue to provide their customers high quality connectivity. This recent order reaffirms the industry leading position that Wavestream has in this market segment with this high-quality transceiver, that has already logged over 20 Million flight hours.”
Is Global Eagle preparing for the return of the MAX?
Since 2017, Global Eagle’s WiFi solution has been certified for production line fit on Boeing’s 737 MAX family aircraft. Its Airconnect 3.0 inflight Wi-Fi system was the first connectivity solution to be line fit on the 737 MAX, and can also be line fitted on other 737 aircraft.
Global Eagle already has four MAX customers for its IFC systems. These are flydubai, LOT Polish and the largest of all MAX operators, Southwest Airlines. The company was also recently awarded a contract to supply Turkish Airlines with connectivity solutions for its narrowbody fleet, including the 737.
Likely this large order is significant for not only Gilat and Global Eagle, but also for Boeing. With the MAX still hoped to return to service before the end of the year, Global Eagle is undoubtedly issuing a vote of confidence in this timeline by getting orders in for system components early in the process.
Mike Pigott, SVP Connectivity, Global Eagle commented on the order, saying,
“Wavestream is a longtime partner of Global Eagle and a reliable high-power transceiver supplier for our inflight entertainment content, connectivity and digital media solutions. Having Wavestream’s quality in our end-to-end solution ensures our continual customer successes.”
More good news for Gilat
This comes on the back of other good news for Gilat. Just days ago, the company announced it had reached a major landmark with the selection of SES for the deployment of a global multiple application VSAT platform for its 03b mPOWER MEO communications system.
The company stated that this multi-million dollar contract firmly established Gilat as a significant NGSO (non-geostationary orbit) player through the technological innovation of its GEO/NGSO platforms.