So, OnAir is
still hanging around, huh? It's been quite a while since we've heard anything
from the in-flight telephony company, with outfits like Row44 and Aircell dominating the space with their near-constant rollout of in-flight WiFi
services here in the States. But for those traveling in and around Asia on Singapore Airlines, it sounds as if your flights are about to get a bit more connected, and potentially more chatty. A new in-flight connectivity system based on Inmarsat's SwiftBroadband (and a collaboration with OnAir) is expected to provide passengers on medium- and long-haul flights with "access to WiFi internet and mobile telephony services." This should, in theory, enable patrons to send and receive SMS text messages with their GSM-compatible handsets, send and receive emails on their smartphones (and laptops, we presume?) and potentially make and receive voice calls. SIA expects to have the first of its fleet equipped in the first half of 2011, with introductions to happen in progressive fashion on its Airbus A380, Airbus A340-500 and Boeing 777-300ER aircraft. Sounds like a few airlines we know
have a little catching up to do...