Southwest Airlines is working with Anuvu to modernise the inflight connectivity equipment across 350 of its Boeing 737NG aircraft, a retrofit project which has just passed the 100 aircraft milestone. The upgraded hardware, which has been named ‘Dedicated Space’ and is a finalist in the 2022 Crystal Cabin Awards, employs software intelligence to make the most efficient use of available bandwidth in real-world conditions, for a reliable and stable user experience. One project goal is to create a ten-fold increase in speed and bandwidth.
Southwest has been trialling the new service on certain West Coast flights, with passengers given access at no charge (the trial ends on 10th June). Key points of assessment are the ability of the service to enable Southwest passengers to access high-bandwidth media sites such as HBO Max and Netflix.
Anuvu completed the first full modernisation of a Southwest B737NG aircraft on 1st April, 2022, less than a year after the programme launched. The installations include the development, integration, certification and production delivery of four new components for the aircraft connectivity system: the modem data unit, a 40W high-power transceiver, a 50W high-power transceiver, and a Wi-Fi 6 access point. All 350 Southwest B737NG aircraft are planned to be fitted with the systems by the end of 2022.