The first factory-installed Intelsat 2Ku system has been delivered on an A321neo aircraft. The 2Ku system was installed by Airbus at its factory in Hamburg, Germany as part of its High Bandwidth Connectivity Service (HBCS) and delivered to Cathay Pacific. This fitment marks the availability of 2Ku as a factory-installed option to airlines on their Airbus A320 Family aircraft, offering access to the global Intelsat network.
“We’re honoured to work with Airbus and Cathay Pacific to create this substantial catalog offering,” said Dave Bijur, senior vice president, commercial for Intelsat’s Commercial Aviation business division (formerly Gogo Commercial Aviation).
“Being part of the world’s largest satellite company creates a great opportunity to expand the services we offer and the fleets we serve. We have been working with Airbus to deliver line-fit aircraft, and are pleased to now make that a reality.”
Having the 2Ku option on the A320 Family enables Cathay Pacific to expand its fully connected aircraft from long-haul and regional wide-body aircraft to its short-haul fleet. Cathay Pacific’s A321neo aircraft will fly regional routes from the airline’s base in Hong Kong.
Vivian Lo, Cathay Pacific’s general manager for customer experience and design stated, “Having these new short-haul aircraft connected is essential in the modern world for business and leisure travel alike. As a premium service carrier, Cathay Pacific is determined to innovate and elevate the short-haul flying experience by offering connectivity, seatback 4K inflight entertainment and Bluetooth headphone pairing on our new state-of-the-art A321neo fleet.”
As a next step, Intelsat is currently leveraging its global orbital and spectrum rights, scale and partnerships to build the world’s first global 5G satellite-based, software-defined ‘network of networks’. Intelsat says this network will be capable of supporting virtually any access technology, enabling the next generation of global mobility, IoT and 5G services with simplicity, coverage, economics and performance.