Leading inflight WiFi provider Inmarsat is working with Boeing to bring a complete connectivity solution to the forthcoming 777X. Using ‘smart pipe’ technology, Inmarsat will deliver fast, secure broadband connectivity to both the cockpit and the passenger cabin, allocating bandwidth intelligently to maintain high-quality service.
What will smart pipe tech mean for the 777X?
The innovative ‘smart pipe’ technology, which will be installed on the 777X, will provide advancements in broadband technology to benefit both passengers and crew on board. Airlines will be able to utilize multiple third party applications simultaneously, with no loss of quality or security of the connection.
This newly developed infrastructure has been designed to allocate available bandwidth to a variety of different applications. It means that there will be a more balanced sharing of capacity, allowing airlines to utilize advanced cockpit technologies such as predictive maintenance, real-time crew communications, route optimization, and cutting edge air traffic management.
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For the passengers, it means better inflight WiFi throughout the phases of flight. Passengers can expect high-speed internet connectivity, as well as live TV for aircraft equipped with suitable facilities.
Delivered through GX Aviation
As would be expected, the technology will be delivered through Inmarsat’s groundbreaking GX Aviation network. This is the only satellite communication network built from the ground up specifically for aviation and is a top choice for airlines looking for exemplary global coverage.
For the cockpit solutions, Inmarsat will use its SwiftBroadband-Safety (SB-S) IP connectivity, the only global solution for protected data on the flight deck.
Philip Balaam, President of Inmarsat Aviation, commented on the smart pipe technology in a statement sent to Simple Flying, saying,
“Inmarsat’s GX Aviation and SB-S are already established as the aviation industry’s most advanced global connectivity solutions. Now, with the addition of ‘smart pipe’ functionality, we are paving the way for a more connected and integrated future, which is crucial for airlines around the world that are transforming their business with the power of digital technology.
“This is a significant milestone in developing the truly connected aircraft and reinforces Inmarsat’s key role in serving the aviation industry with a suite of operational and passenger connectivity services. The results from initial tests for our ‘smart pipe’ are promising and we look forward to continuing our collaboration with Boeing in preparation for the forthcoming entry into service of its new 777X aircraft.”
The Boeing 777X is well into its flight test program, with the second unit completing its maiden flight at the start of May. Despite the challenges presented by the current crisis, Boeing is still on track to begin delivering this aircraft early next year.
Lufthansa is set to be the launch customer of the aircraft. The German aviation group has orders in for 20 of the type and was previously a Boeing launch customer for a number of other models, including the 737 and 747-8i. With Inmarsat’s smart pipe technology on board, the first passengers can expect an exemplary inflight connectivity experience.