Satcom Direct, a business aviation solutions provider, has unveiled an expanded range of service plans for Viasat’s Jet ConneX inflight broadband service. The new service plans will be made exclusively available to Satcom Direct operators, equipping their aircraft with the SD Plane Simple Ka-band tail-mounted terminal. The option includes the first-ever ‘Power by the Hour’ option for Jet ConneX, enabling business jet operators to pay an hourly rate for inflight connectivity.
According to Satcom Direct, installation of the compact hardware is minimally invasive. The terminal, which is purpose-built for business aviation, consists of only two line-replaceable units (LRUs) – a tail mount antenna with a reduced footprint, and the SD Modem Unit, which sits in the unpressurised part of the fuselage, saving valuable cabin space.
In combination with the new service plans, including the Power by the Hour options, SD and Viasat are making more powerful Ka-band connectivity available for more aircraft sizes.
The result is that high-speed data transfer for teleconferencing, HD video streaming and multiple digital applications for high volumes of users traveling on mid to large-size jets can become the norm for owners and operators using Jet ConneX.
In addition to the new service plans, Satcom Direct and Viasat have confirmed that the SD Plane Simple Ka-band terminal will connect immediately with the GX satellite constellation, launched by Viasat’s recently acquired Inmarsat business. It will also be upgradable to Viasat’s full Ka-band network, including the ViaSat-3 satellites and next generation GX satellites as they come online.
The new service plans will enter commercial service once flight testing of the SD Plane Simple Ka-band terminal is finalised and required regulatory certification is confirmed, which is anticipated to be granted in early 2024.