Planning to fly on United or Continental at any point over the next few years? Then it looks like your odds of having in-flight WiFi will be getting increasingly better. United Continental Holdings announced today that it's signed an agreement with Panasonic Avionics Corporation to bring satellite-based WiFi connectivity to more than 300 of its aircraft beginning in mid-2012. Those aircraft will include Airbus 319 and 320 and Boeing 747, 757, 767, 777 and 787, and the company says it expects its entire mainline fleet to be covered by 2015. No specific word on any additional content or services that will come with it (or a cost, for that matter), but the company promises that the system will "enable wireless streaming of video content."
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United Continental Holdings Selects Panasonic to Install Wi-Fi
COMPANY DETAILS PLANS FOR SYSTEMWIDE WI-FI
CHICAGO, Nov. 4, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- United Continental Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: UAL) today announced that it has selected Panasonic Avionics Corporation to provide Wi-Fi connectivity on more than 300 United Airlines and Continental Airlines mainline aircraft beginning in mid-2012. Panasonic's Ku-band satellite technology offers faster speed than air-to-ground technology (ATG) and will provide connectivity on flights worldwide. The system will also enable wireless streaming of video content.
"Our customers tell us they value Wi-Fi," said Jim Compton, United's executive vice president and chief revenue officer. "As a global carrier, we selected satellite-based Ku-band technology to enable customers to stay connected on long-haul overseas flights, something no other U.S.-based international carrier currently offers."
Paul Margis, chief executive officer for Panasonic Avionics Corporation said, "Panasonic is honored that United Continental Holdings selected our Global Communications Suite for more than 300 aircraft in its domestic and international fleets. United Continental Holdings has an exciting vision about how to leverage Ku technology within its fleets, and we are thrilled to be working with them on a connectivity experience that sets a new standard in in-flight entertainment and communications."
United Continental Holdings expects to install the Panasonic system on Airbus 319 and 320 and Boeing 747, 757, 767, 777 and 787 aircraft. Customers will be able to use their wireless devices such as laptops, smart phones and tablets onboard those aircraft to connect with internet service using the in-flight hotspot.
United Continental Holdings expects the entire mainline fleet will be equipped with Wi-Fi by 2015. Continental Airlines previously announced plans to install satellite-based Wi-Fi on more than 200 DIRECTV®-equipped aircraft beginning in 2012.
About United Continental Holdings, Inc.
United Continental Holdings, Inc. is the holding company for both United Airlines and Continental Airlines. Together with United Express, Continental Express and Continental Connection, these airlines operate an average of 5,717 flights a day to 376 airports on six continents from their hubs in Chicago, Cleveland, Denver, Guam, Houston, Los Angeles, New York/Newark Liberty, San Francisco, Tokyo and Washington, D.C. United and Continental are members of Star Alliance, which offers more than 21,200 daily flights to 1,185 airports in 185 countries. United and Continental's more than 80,000 employees reside in every U.S. state and in many countries around the world. For more information about United Continental Holdings, Inc., go to UnitedContinentalHoldings.com. For more information about the airlines, see united.com and continental.com or follow United on Twitter and Facebook.
SOURCE United Continental Holdings, Inc.