Viasat will provide in-flight connectivity for Virgin Atlantic

Viasat will provide in-flight connectivity for Virgin Atlantic
Ryan is a senior editor at TechForge Media with over a decade of experience covering the latest technology and interviewing leading industry figures. He can often be sighted at tech conferences with a strong coffee in one hand and a laptop in the other. If it's geeky, he’s probably into it. Find him on Twitter: @Gadget_Ry

Global satellite communications firm Viasat has been selected by Virgin Atlantic to provide in-flight connectivity for its new aircraft.

Three of Virgin Atlantic’s newest planes, the A330neo (Airbus A330-900), are due to be delivered in September. The company ordered 14 of the aircraft to replace its A330-300s.

With a 64-metre wingspan, Virgin Atlantic says its newest aircraft will be “one of the most efficient aircraft in the sky and able to fly further and faster”. Passengers are also set for an enhanced in-cabin experience.

Each ‘Retreat Suite’ features an ottoman that doubles up as an extra seat so up to four people can enjoy dinner together in a private space, or catch a flick on the 27-inch touchscreen. All Upper-Class customers can access ‘The Loft’, a social space that allows guests to enjoy refreshments from the self-service fridge and drinks dispenser.

“When it comes to innovating for our customers, we never stand still. Our desire to create memorable experiences means we’ll continue to imagine with fresh ideas. We care about every detail of the cabin design and every step of our customer’s journey,” said Corneel Koster, Chief Customer and Operating Officer at Virgin Atlantic.

“We’re proud to unveil our state-of-the-art A330neo and show the evolution of our customer experience, with each of our customers receiving a premium experience regardless of the cabin they travel in. They’ll be better connected with their fellow travellers and our amazing crew in the air, and with their friends and family on the ground.”

While enjoying many of the luxuries available is probably a little out of most of our budgets, more of us can treat ourselves to some in-flight WiFi.

Anyone who has used traditional in-flight WiFi that relies on ground terminals will know it’s a frustrating experience. Considering the often slow and unreliable service, many choose just to forego connectivity altogether while they’re in the air.

Compared to ground terminals, satellites provide faster and more reliable in-flight WiFi services that remove the frustration and enable customers to work and entertain themselves until the plane touches down.

“We’re thrilled that Virgin Atlantic – an airline with innovation and customer service at its core – has chosen Viasat as its IFC partner on its new Airbus aircraft,” commented Don Buchman, Viasat’s VP and GM of Commercial Aviation.

“We have a strong history of delivering quality IFC on long-haul flights and look forward to bringing our technology and service capabilities to Virgin Atlantic and its customers.”

Passengers travelling on the A330neo will be connected to Viasat’s network of owned and partner Ka-band satellites. The installed equipment is designed to be forward-compatible with Viasat’s next-generation satellite constellation, ViaSat-3.

(Image Credit: Virgin Atlantic)

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