Passengers of Lufthansa and Austrian Airlines
will soon be able to go online during short and medium-haul
flights, just as they have already been able to do for some time
on long haul flights.
Last summer, Lufthansa received the
Supplemental Type Certificate for its Airbus fleet A320 from the
European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), and successfully concluded
all the necessary preparation work. Now the next stage of testing
on Lufthansa and Austrian routes will start, initially involving
five aircraft in each case.
Passengers who fly on these aircraft
will be offered free internet use during this test phase. The
analysis of the user behaviour will provide the data necessary to
further enhance the service ahead of its market launch.
Harry Hohmeister, member of the Board of Directors of
Deutsche Lufthansa AG and responsible for Hub Management, said, "I
am pleased that we can soon offer broadband internet to our
passengers on inner-European flights, giving them the chance to
have a seamless digital experience. Since the launch of Lufthansa Flynet, it has been our goal to offer added value on board to our
customers through innovation - and that also includes our Internet
In the first quarter of 2017, the
number of Lufthansa aircraft fitted out with internet access will
rise to around 20. One by one, the entire Lufthansa A320 fleet is
to be equipped with the latest advanced technology by the middle
of 2018. The re-fitting of all 31 aircraft at Austrian Airlines is
planned to be completed before the end of April 2017.
As well as
Lufthansa and Austrian Airlines, Eurowings also has plans to bring
the internet on board its aircraft – estimated launch is to be by
the end of the first quarter 2017. A total of 69 Eurowings
aircraft are to be fitted with the systems by the summer of 2017.
Lufthansa passengers can gain Wifi access to the
internet using their own mobile devices. As well as email
services, applications such as video streaming will be possible
Market launch of the new service is scheduled to take place
sometime during the first quarter of the year. Customers will then
be able to choose between three different service packages - FlyNet Message for EUR 3, FlyNet Surf for EUR 7 and FlyNet Stream
for EUR 12 per flight.
Whilst FlyNet Message only allows the use
of messaging services such as email, WhatsApp or iMessage, FlyNet
Surf also enables passengers to surf the internet. With the FlyNet
Stream service package, streaming is also possible. The packages
can be paid for by credit card or via payment services such as Paypal.
The internet service of Lufthansa Airlines
and their technology partner Inmarsat uses the latest broadband
satellite technology (Ka-band) and provides seamless, reliable
coverage on short haul and mid-range flights via the Inmarsat
network Global Xpress (GX). Inmarsat partner Deutsche Telekom will
be the Internet Service Provider for Lufthansa passengers.
Lufthansa Technik is responsible for the fitting of
all the systems and components, as well as dealing with the
required Aviation regulations and other statutory authorisations.
They are fitting out the entire Airbus A320 family of the
Lufthansa Group Airlines with the latest Ka-band satellite
technology. By spring, almost 100 aircraft are scheduled to have
The aircraft can be fitted with the required
antennae and routers on a series of ten production lines, working
simultaneously, at the Lufthansa Technik sites. On account of the
only minimally-invasive adjustments needed to the aircraft
structure, the rapid re-fitting of even large fleets is possible -
generally involving just four days downtime per aircraft.
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