Feature Article

April 14, 2014

Gogo 2Ku Will Boost In-Flight Internet Speeds to 70Mbps

Chances are if you have flown domestically within the United States over the past several years, you may already be familiar with Gogo, an in-flight broadband provider. 

Gogo takes advantage of various technologies to provide passengers with in-flight Internet service - such as Air-To-Ground which uses cellular networks, and Ku-band satellite that extends connectivity to transoceanic routes.

Gogo's Ground-to-Orbit infrastructure, which just became available this year, is a hybrid technology that uses satellite for receive only and Gogo's Air-to-Ground network for the return link to the ground, boasting speeds of up to 50Mbps.

Now the aircraft communications service provider has announced the next step in their technology roadmap for global connectivity – 2Ku.

The new 2Ku service will utilize the same low-profile antennae as Gogo's Ground-to-Orbit technology, but instead of the Air-To-Ground return link, 2Ku will have two high efficiency satellite antennae, allowing the company to deliver peak speeds of more than 70Mbps to an aircraft.

Those satellite antennae are approximately two times more spectrally efficient than other antennae in the market and are just 4.5 inches tall, which means they will produce more bandwidth at less cost.

Since the antennae can be used with any Ku-satellite, it avoids the single point of failure that comes with reliance on just one satellite for connectivity.

Michael Small, president and CEO of Gogo, noted that his company has proven that it is the leader in developing new technologies for the aero market, and that 2Ku is the next step for the global commercial aviation communications market.

"When we launched our in-flight Internet service five years ago, we were able to deliver peak speeds to the aircraft of 3.1 Mbps through our ATG network,” said Small. 

Now, he says, Gogo's Ground-to-Orbit infrastructure can take the new 2Ku peak speed of 70Mbps to the rest of the world.

Gogo expects the 2Ku service to be available for the commercial aviation market in mid-2015. Investors took a liking to the news as the company's stock priced soared 9 percent after the announcement was made.

Edited by Stefania Viscusi

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