High speed in-flight broadband is to be made available on more than 30 Austrian Airlines’ short-haul aircraft.
The Airbus A320 family aircraft will be equipped with in-flight connectivity provided by satellite communications provider Inmarsat.
The GX for Aviation solution will allow passengers to browse the internet, stream videos and check social media with service levels claimed to be “on par” with broadband connectivity available on the ground.
The first installation and testing onboard Austrian Airlines aircraft is underway.
The Austrian Airlines contract is part of a 10-year strategic deal announced last year with parent company Lufthansa Group.
This included the selection of GX for Aviation for Lufthansa’s European continental fleet of more than 150 aircraft.
The service recently went live under a ‘soft launch’ phase on selected aircraft with Lufthansa and services are expected to start with the airline soon.
Inmarsat Aviaition president Leo Mondale said: “This announcement is particularly special for us, as it comes soon after we unveiled that the service is now live after five years of development.
“For too long, airline passengers have struggled with either substandard or non-existent connectivity onboard their flights. GX for Aviation marks an important turning point.
“Broadband services are now available in the sky, so you can browse the internet, stream videos, download files, check and update your social media, just as you have been doing on the ground.
“Our airline customers understand that service differentiators such as high-speed broadband on flights are key to meeting the expectations of today’s passengers and therefore strengthening their position in a highly competitive market.”