By Bernd Debusmann Jr
Neary 40 percent of airline customers plan to spend $1m per aircraft to boost connectivity, according to Honeywell
A significant number of airlines plan to spend at least $1 million per aircraft to help boost in-flight connectivity, according to data from American multinational Honeywell.
In an interview with Arabian Business, Raghed Talih, leader for Honeywell Aerospace in the Middle East said its polls show that 38 percent of respondents reported expecting to spend $1m per aircraft over the next 5 years.
The data also shows that 81 percent of aviation professionals cited connected technologies as either a high or very high priority for their business.
“Undoubtedly, airlines are recognising the widespread benefits of connectivity – from predictive maintenance to fuel efficiency – and are investing,” Talih added.
Separate research from Honeywell connectivity partner Inmarsat shows that 84 percent of passengers would be more likely to rebook with an airline if high-quality inflight Wi-Fi was available, and that 80 percent of business passengers are likely to work in the air if possible.
“To satisfy this demand, airlines and business jet operators are turning to satellite communications solutions like Honeywell’s portfolio, that offer passengers and flight crew reliable voice, fax and high-speed data communications throughout the world,” Talih said.
Talih added, “Opening the data pipe to and from the aircraft creates opportunities for flight crews, fleet managers and maintenance personnel to make better decisions for their aircraft and passengers using real-time data.
“This connectivity allows the aircraft to become a data-rich node on a larger network, leveraging new technology and more reliable high-speed Wi-Fi connections to link an airplane’s components and equipment to immediately send, receive and analyse data. Airlines can impact their bottom line in a big way by making operations safer and more efficient.”
Honeywell partner Inmarsat has contracted to additional satellites – configured in both Ka and L-band services – to go live soon, the first of which is to be completed next year. The satellites are expected to result in more ‘seamless’ experiences and improved connectivity, according to Talih.