Emirates, the Dubai-based airline, has announced plans to provide high-speed in-flight broadband to passengers on 50 new Airbus A350 aircraft set to enter service in 2024. The airline will be using Inmarsat’s Global Xpress (GX) satellite network which is the world’s only globally available broadband network, ensuring that passengers will have continuous global connectivity regardless of their destination, including flights over the Arctic.
The Airbus A350s will be the first Emirates aircraft to use Inmarsat’s Global Xpress (GX) satellite network, which powers the world’s first and only globally available broadband network, ensuring passengers have continuous global connectivity regardless of their destination, including the North Pole. Emirates passengers will be able to stay connected with family and friends, browse the internet, and enjoy social media from the comfort of their seats thanks to the advanced high-speed capabilities of broadband.
Inmarsat’s fully financed technology roadmap calls for the installation of seven additional satellite payloads to the GX network, which will power the Emirates inflight broadband and presently consists of five Ka-band satellites. Included in this are two Inmarsat-6 spacecraft, the most advanced commercial communications satellites ever constructed, both of which are slated to start operations in 2023. The world’s only commercial mobile broadband service will be made possible for aircraft flying in higher altitudes and across the Arctic, such as routes between the Middle East and North America, by the addition of three more satellites in a geostationary orbit that will increase speed, capacity, and resilience, as well as by the placement of two satellites in a highly elliptical orbit.
The Chief Operating Officer of Emirates, Adel al Redha, stressed the significance of providing a top-notch onboard experience for the airline, noting that suppliers and the airline have collaborated closely to make sure that every aircraft has Wi-Fi connectivity. He also said the airline’s intention to use Inmarsat’s GX Aviation for its fleet of Airbus A350 in order to investigate ways to enhance connectivity. He also emphasized how GX Aviation’s cutting-edge capabilities will increase capacity throughout their entire worldwide network, including routes that fly over the Arctic.
William Huot-Marchand, Senior Vice President of Inflight Connectivity at Inmarsat Aviation, expressed his delight that Emirates has joined the GX Aviation family. He stated that this will be Emirates’ first fleet to be outfitted with their advanced GX Aviation solution. He also stated that GX Aviation is well-suited to passenger expectations for a digital onboard experience, providing high-speed connectivity with continuous global coverage across all flight routes, including those over the Arctic. He is looking forward to collaborating closely with Emirates on the rollout and other exciting innovations that will build on the airline’s excellent track record of providing best-in-class passenger experiences.
Furthermore, Emirates also improved connectivity for its Skywards loyalty program members, Gold and Silver members traveling in Business class or First class will receive free internet access for the duration of their flight. Platinum members traveling in any cabin class will also have this benefit.
The latest addition to Emirates’ multi-billion-dollar investment in its onboard product and passenger experience is the planned installation of high-speed inflight broadband on A350 aircraft. Other multi-billion-dollar investments include the largest known fleet retrofit project of 120 aircraft, significant investment in menu development and food and beverage experiences, the planned introduction of next-generation inflight entertainment systems on incoming aircraft, and the design of a hospitality training program.