China Airlines selects Inmarsat and SITA for passenger broadband

March 30, 2022
China Airlines received delivery of its first Airbus A321neo and put it into service on 27 March.

TAOYUAN CITY, Taiwan - China Airlines in Taoyuan City, Taiwan needed an in-flight high-speed broadband Internet equipment provider. They found their solution from Inmarsat in London, and its partner SITA in Geneva.

China Airlines received delivery of its first Airbus A321neo and put it into service on 27 March 2022. When it took to the skies, it was equipped with Inmarsat's GX Aviation in-flight Wi-Fi and SITA's Internet ONAIR technology.

The GX network currently consists of five Ka-band satellites while Inmarsat plans to add seven more satellites as part of the company's "technology roadmap." This includes two commercial communication Inmarsat-6 satellites, both of which are scheduled to enter service next year. They will be followed by three additional satellites in geostationary orbit, which will allow for broadband service for aircraft flying in higher elevations and across the Arctic.

In addition, China Airlines has ordered a total of 25 Airbus A321neos as part of a narrow-body fleet replacement program. All of the aircraft will be equipped with Inmarsat’s GX Aviation and SITA’s Internet ONAIR, alongside other new cabin features, including 4K high-solution displays.

"Providing a digital and touchless onboard experience will be the key to increasing passenger confidence as air travel recovers from the Covid-19 pandemic," Katrina Korzenowski, Asia Pacific Vice President at SITA's aircraft technology business says. "Our Internet ONAIR technology, coupled with Inmarsat’s GX Aviation connectivity, offers China Airlines the perfect blueprint for a world-class inflight broadband offering onboard its Airbus A321neo aircraft and we’re proud to be working together to achieve this. It also means that SITA is now providing a full suite of services, from cockpit to cabin, to China Airlines."

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