Delta Air Lines has made announced it will increase its future installations of Gogo’s next-generation 2Ku Wi-Fi “by at least 350 new aircraft”, which would bring the airline’s total commitment to the new technology to over 600 aircraft in its mainline fleet.
Gogo says the new 2Ku service will give Delta flyers uninterrupted coverage nearly anywhere in the world, with speeds and bandwidth more than 20 times that of Gogo’s current Air-To-Ground technology, enough to support video streaming.
The first Delta aircraft equipped with 2Ku will takeoff this summer. Later this year, Delta will launch a live TV product, IPTV, which will let passengers enjoy television programming on their own devices.
“Delta customers have expressed an interest in their time in the air being as productive as their time on the ground, and 2Ku satellite offers a vastly upgraded in-flight Wi-Fi experience,” says Tim Mapes, Delta’s Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer. “By committing to more aircraft with 2Ku technology, we’re providing Delta customers with faster and more reliable in-flight connectivity as a part of Delta’s commitment to always delivering the industry’s best on-board services.”
With installations already underway on Delta’s 737-800 and A319 fleet, and retrofits planned on existing aircraft, Delta will have more than 35 aircraft offering 2Ku connectivity by the end of 2016.
Gogo’s 2Ku service will also be offered on Airbus’ new A350-900 aircraft which will enter service in 2017 and on A330-900Neo aircraft scheduled for 2019.
“We know how important it is to Delta to bring this technology to passengers and we plan on getting it deployed on these aircraft as soon as possible,” says Jon Cobin, Gogo’s Executive Vice President, Global Airline Business Group.
American Airlines had previously put its in-flight Wi-Fi service on 200 aircraft, currently provided by Gogo, up for bid. The airline expressed dissatisfaction with the current Gogo ATG product’s performance and invited Gogo’s rival ViaSat to bid offering its high-speed service. After a brief legal dispute, Gogo said it would compete against ViaSat for those orders by offering its new 2Ku product.