Aerkomm to Provide In-Flight Connectivity to Hong Kong Airlines

By Rachel Jewett | February 6, 2020
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This Airbus A330 is one of the Hong Kong Airlines aircraft that will be equipped with Aerkomm’s in-flight entertainment and connectivity technology. Photo: Airbus

Aerkomm subsidiary Aircom Pacific has agreed to provide Hong Kong Airlines with both its AirCinema and AERKOMM K++ In-Flight Entertainment and Connectivity (IFEC) solutions. Hong Kong Airlines plans to install Aircom’s solutions on 12 Airbus A320 and 5 Airbus A330-300 aircraft, as well as the AERKOMM AirCinema system for the Airbus A320 aircraft.

Aerokomm is a “development stage service provider” of IFEC solutions for airlines, operating through Aircom Pacific Inc., according to its website. Hong Kong Airlines is the latest carrier to adopt its IFEC technology, joining Afriqyah Airways, Air Malta and Onur Air as the only other publicly announced airline customers.

The company describes its mobile satellite broadband service as being enabled by Ka-band High Throughput Satellites (HTS) with coverage mainly available in the Asia Pacific region. In December 2018, the company signed an agreement with Airbus for the development of a complete solution to install their IFEC system.

An overview of the concept of operations for Aerkomm subsidiary Aircom Pacific from a 2018 investor’s presentation. The company and its subsidiary Aircom Pacific have been relatively quietly until the recent purchase agreement from Hong Kong Airlines.

The AERKOMM AirCinema system, which Aircom is designing and implementing specifically for Hong Kong Airlines, will introduce free high speed internet access to the seat back screens of Hong Kong Airlines’ Airbus A320 aircraft, connected via the Ka-band AERKOMM K++ IFEC system. Instead of a preloaded selection of in-flight entertainment, passengers will have access to high-speed internet streaming services for videos, music, live TV, and social media. The AERKOMM K++ IFEC system aims to provide passengers of Hong Kong Airlines with an “at home” network experience by giving free access to on-board WiFi to all passenger personal devices.

Global Connected Aircraft Podcast logoWant to hear more on aircraft connectivity applications? Check out the Global Connected Aircraft Podcast, where Avionics editor-in-chief Woodrow Bellamy III interviews airlines and industry influencers on how they’re applying connectivity solutions.

“This agreement marks the next step in our partnership with Hong Kong Airlines, who will be the launch customer of our AERKOMM K++ IFEC system,” Aerkomm CEO Jeffrey Wun said. “This agreement, as the first application of our technology to a commercial passenger fleet, is a milestone in the commercialization of our AERKOMM K++ IFEC system.”

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