Airbus, Delta, OneWeb, Sprint, Airtel to set up seemless air alliance
London (Reuters): Airbus SE, Delta Air Lines Inc., Sprint Corp. and two U.S. satellite-services providers have kicked off an initiative to enhance internet access on airliners, inviting other companies to join voluntary efforts to upgrade global standards for airborne connectivity.
The alliance, which also includes satellite broadband operator OneWeb and in-flight connectivity specialist GoGo, plans to bring more companies onboard.
The aim of the ‘Seamless Alliance’ is to provide high speed, low latency connectivity in flight using satellites.
“With the launch of our first production satellites set for later this year, we’re one step closer to bridging the global Digital Divide on land and in the air,” said Greg Wyler, Founder and Executive Chairman of OneWeb.
Gopal Vittal, MD & CEO (India & South Asia) of Bharti Airtel, the third-largest mobile operator in the world with operations in 16 countries across Asia and Africa, said: “We are delighted to be an initial member of this innovative technology platform to bring seamless connectivity to customers in the true sense… We look forward to collaborating with all partner members to ensure this platform goes live at the earliest.”
Gogo, the market leader in in-flight connectivity, is looking forward to “working with the Alliance to develop future generations of inflight connectivity, which will provide airline passengers worldwide with simple, fast and reliable connectivity,” said Michael Small, CEO of Gogo.
The global initiative, announced on Sunday in Barcelona, will also look at expanding its current membership with other industry operators beyond the five founding members.