At the risk of turning this blog into in-flight connectivity central (would that be so bad?), I have another little nugget to share.
In recent months, Panasonic has been rather quiet about its Ku band-based connectivity solution. Today, it became a little bit more verbal.
“We now have solved the network and coverage issues so as to provide a global solution. We have also solved the size and weight issues so as to provide a solution for all commercial aircraft including regional jets,” says Panasonic director of strategic product marketing David Bruner.
“Finally the cost of the system is now relatively small making this service feasible to even the most thrifty of the low cost carriers.”
Rival Thales recently confirmed it will focus on offering airborne broadband connectivity solutions using Inmarsat’s new aeronautical service SwiftBroadband, after determining there are “significant economic challenges” with Ku band outside of the continental United States.
Specifically, Thales VP and general manager for IFE Alan Pellegrini said: “Ku-band may take hold, primarily in the USA, but frankly given Connexion by Boeing’s demise, the significant investment they made, the lack of business model they’ve proven, I think it is prudent to move at a modest pace with that particular technology.”
Panasonic clearly disputes this assessment of the market. The devil is in the details of its offering, of course. And a customer announcement would be nice. But I’m keen to explore…