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Telstra trialling 4G inflight wi-fi

written by australianaviation.com.au | May 12, 2014
The Skiinet antenna installation. (Telstra)
The Skiinet antenna installation. (Telstra)

Australia’s largest telco Telstra is conducting flight tests that would allow inflight wi-fi access using 4G mobile phone technology.

The technology, dubbed ‘Skinet’, uses four specially-built mobile phone tower sites with upwards-facing antennas located underneath the Melbourne-Sydney flightpath and a specially-fitted antenna on the aircraft.

Telstra executive director of networks Mike Wright said Telstra was exploring the “possible economics around building a nationwide, commercial LTE network in the sky”.

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“We were able to successfully establish and maintain data connections, achieving a maximum data throughput of 15 Mbps, with an average throughput around 10 Mbps,” Wright wrote on the Telstra Exchange blog.

The tests were conducted using a Cessna and a private jet flying between Australia’s two most populous cities, according to the Australian Financial Review.

Wright said high-speed broadband could be used not only by passengers to get online but also for a range of “remote monitoring and control applications”.

Additional tests are slated for later in 2014.

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2 Comments

  • Raymond

    says:

    Is something like this already operational in any other countries?

  • stephen a

    says:

    why dont we fix the on ground before we worry about the air

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