Canadian airline WestJet signed a multi-year agreement with Panasonic Avionics to add wireless satellite-based in-flight connectivity to its fleet of Boeing
Next-Generation 737 aircraft.
Under the agreement, Panasonic will provide stored content streamed wirelessly from an onboard server to passengers' smart phones, tablets and laptops. Wi-Fi will also be available via Panasonic's Ku-band aeronautical satellite network.
"We know that roughly 75 percent of our guests are bringing their own devices on board today," said Marshall Wilmot, vice president of product and distribution at WestJet. "They tell us they want the opportunity to connect to check their email, put the finishing touches on a presentation or keep in touch with family and friends."
According to WestJet, Panasonic will install the system on one of its Boeing 737s by the end of 2014 to allow for testing. The airline did not say when the service would be installed across its entire fleet.