Next-generation ground-based technology is being developed by Gogo to meet the connectivity requirements of commercial and business aviation in North America. According to the company, the technology will provide performance similar to the ground.
This includes the capacity to stream videos for select narrow-body planes, commercial regional jets and business aviation planes flying in the United States and Canada. It is likely to be available in 2018.
According to Michael Small, who is the president and CEO at Gogo, they now have upgrade plans for over 100 Mbps for both their North American ground-based and global satellite networks.
Unlicensed spectrum will be used by the new network with a proprietary modem and a new beam-forming antenna to offer peak network speeds exceeding 100 Mbps. The network will use LTE technology with Gogo’s existing first-generation network and infrastructure of over 250 towers.
Anand Chari, who is the chief technology officer at Gogo, said that it is important to leverage their first generation network to make this next-generation network extremely reliable and economical to deploy.
According to Gogo, the benefits will include low drag on the planes due to the small size of the antennas, overnight installation and low equipment weight and cost of the equipment. There will also be advantages in terms of latency as compared to satellite solutions
Planes equipped with Gogo’s older air-to-ground technologies will require a new blade antenna and modem to benefit from the new service