Another bump in the road for in-flight internet on UA

Discussion in 'United Airlines | MileagePlus' started by Wandering Aramean, Aug 22, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    LiveTV is the company that provides the in-flight TV service on the PMCO domestic fleet. They are also the company that both PCMO and the new UA have each signed a MoU with to provide in-flight internet connectivity at some level (most recently to all the DirecTV planes). And apparently they are cursed.

    The latest effort, a Ka-band satellite offering in partnership with ViaSat, is now facing potential delays due to a failed rocket launch on Sunday. The ViaSat folks are saying it is too soon to suggest that the LiveTV implementation timeline is at risk, but the satellite still on the ground months after its initial expected launch schedule and the launch company is currently in a stand down while they figure out what happened yesterday.

    This could get interesting.

    A bit more coverage here and here.

    And, FWIW, UA is the largest committed customer to the LiveTV product which is why I started the thread here. Especially with the announcement yesterday reaffirming the commitment to deploy the product I figured it made sense as a place for the discussion.

    For folks anxiously awaiting a broader in-flight internet deployment on the UA/CO fleet this could get interesting indeed.
     
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  2. From NYC
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    From NYC Gold Member

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    Personally, I’m in no big rush to have internet access on board. But I do recognize how others feel about this.
     
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  3. goalie
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    goalie Gold Member

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    Agreed on both points (and just as long as cell phone use is not allowed ;))
     
  4. From NYC
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    From NYC Gold Member

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    At the last, I think it was, CO DO. SMI/J asked the 500 or so of us there how many people wanted cell phone usage on planes. A very small smattering of hands went up. He then asked how many people don’t want cell phones ever to be allowed on planes. A Kansas wheat field of hands went up. He then said, maybe we should set up a separate payment to be cell-phone free.

    And that’s who’s running the company now.
     
  5. Flyer
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    Flyer Silver Member

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    Ughhh bad news.

    I. Want. Wifi.
     
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  6. Golfingboy
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    Golfingboy Gold Member

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    I am in the same boat as you :(

    CO/UA can easily terminate the MoU and go with gogo... The only advantage of having ka-band is that it makes watching streaming content doable, which I do not care much about... I just want something that allows me to navigate the internet at reasonable upload/download speeds and Gogo achieves that all the time for me.
     
  7. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    At what cost? Both to LiveTV and to Aircell?

    There are other advantages that the Ka solution offers, including a lower total weight for the kit and supposedly less expensive overall operating costs.

    I've had quite mixed results with Gogo's performance. When the service has been free (i.e. lots of folks using it) the quality of the experience degrades quite rapidly. I'm not at all convinced that the system can handle reasonably high utilization levels.
     

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