ITASCA, Ill., Dec. 10 /PRNewswire/ -- If 2008 was the coming out party for In-flight Internet, 2009 promises to be the year it takes the U.S. by storm. In 2008, airlines began to announce their plans for In-flight Internet service in earnest. American Airlines and Virgin America launched service and Delta Air Lines is expected to launch service before the end of 2008. At the center of this rapidly emerging market is Aircell® and its Gogo® In-flight Internet service, currently the only comprehensive In-flight Internet service available in the U.S. Already in deployment at American and Virgin America, Aircell is targeting commitments for Gogo to reach 2,000 commercial aircraft by the end of 2009.
"2008 was a year of groundbreaking milestones for Aircell culminating in the successful launches of Gogo In-flight Internet service on American Airlines and Virgin America," said Jack Blumenstein, President and CEO of Aircell. "2009 promises to be Aircell's most extraordinary year yet. We are ending 2008 on a high note with the recent launch of Virgin America and upcoming launch of Delta Air Lines and are poised to carry the momentum into the new year and beyond."
In addition to the airlines that Aircell has launched this year, most major U.S. carriers are in advanced discussions with or are already contractually committed to Aircell. As the company continues to develop its international offering, it is also in talks with numerous international airlines as well. The September 2008 announcement of Air Canada's intention to launch Gogo service is a taste of things to come as Aircell secures network partners in both Canada and Mexico and continues to evaluate solutions for Gogo In-flight Internet on intercontinental flights.
"Innovative airlines that offer In-flight Internet are already seeing a migration of passengers from those airlines that do not offer this highly valued service," Mr. Blumenstein continued. "Business travelers and leisure travelers alike are hooked on Gogo. Our strong and growing customer response is demonstrating that $9.95 to $12.95 is a small price to pay for the ability to stay connected and take control over how you spend your time in-flight."
Gogo In-flight Internet service turns an aircraft into a flying Wi-Fi hotspot, enabling passengers to surf the Web, check email, instant message, access a corporate VPN and more. The service debuted on American Airlines' entire 767-200 fleet in August and Virgin America in November, and has been generating strong customer interest and usage since.
In 2009, Aircell plans to expand its network and Gogo offering, including adding rich, multimedia applications such as games, television, movies and music. Gogo's expansion will offer airlines additional ancillary revenue while providing a suite of entertainment options to Gogo users.
"Providing In-flight Internet service on airplanes was only the beginning," said Tom Weigman, Executive Vice President, Wireless Services, Aircell. "Our Wi-Fi devices have become portals to life, enabling us to work, play and relate wherever and whenever we want. Having opened up the airplane cabin to the Internet, we look forward to dramatically enriching the passenger in-flight experience by providing the services and content they desire."
-- Announcing Delta Air Lines as first major U.S. airline to offer broadband In-flight Internet access on entire domestic mainline fleet
-- Launching Gogo, the first and only comprehensive broadband In-flight Internet service in the U.S., on American Airlines
-- Announcing Air Canada as Aircell's first international airline partner
-- Launching Gogo on Virgin America and producing the first-ever live, air-to-ground video-stream to YouTube Live
Aircell® is the world's leading provider of airborne communications. As winner of an exclusive FCC frequency license in 2006, Aircell has built a revolutionary mobile broadband network for commercial and business aviation. In 2008, the Aircell Network and its in-flight portal, Gogo®, revolutionized the commercial airline passenger flight experience by delivering a robust Internet experience at 35,000 feet. In addition, the Aircell Network provides airlines with connectivity to operations and a path to enhanced cabin services such as video, audio, television and more. A similar feature set is available to Business aircraft operators. Aircell has facilities in Broomfield, Colorado, and Itasca, Illinois. Aircell's vision is to give everyone the ability to stay in touch, in flight®. For more information about Aircell, please visit http://www.aircell.com.
Gogo®, powered by Aircell, turns a commercial airplane into a Wi-Fi hotspot with true in-flight Internet access. Passengers with Wi-Fi enabled devices, such as laptops, smartphones and PDAs, can surf the Web, check e-mail, instant message, access a corporate VPN and more. For more information about Gogo, please visit http://www.gogoinflight.com.
© 2008 Aircell LLC. Aircell and Gogo are trademarks of Aircell or its affiliates. All rights reserved.
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