In-Flight WiFi Coming Soon
American Airlines is one step closer to offering in-flight broadband access to it’s passengers. Aircell, the airline’s in-flight internet provider, just received approval from the FAA to begin producing and employing it’s broadband connectivity gear on any aircraft cleared to use it. The service will initially be limited to transcontinental US flights, but will eventually roll out to shorter flights. Both companies expect to debut the service by the end of 2008.
According to ars technica:
Planes will be outfitted with three antennae, one on the top for GPS and two on the bottom. The broadband signal will come from Aircell’s 92 cellular towers across the continental 48 states that operate on the 3GHz frequency band.
American Airlines’ Boeing 767-200 fleet will be the first to be retrofitted, but the company has been adament that their technology is not limited to any one airline and has future plans to work with Virgin America.
There are still however some questions as to how much the service will cost (it’s estimated to be about $10) and just how good the service will be.