The UAE’s flag carrier Etihad proudly introduced its “Wi-Fly” service which is a product of $1 billion agreement with one of the globe’s leading supplier of in-flight entertainment and equipment Panasonic Avionics. The first plane outfitted with the communications technology, an Airbus A330-20, flew on Monday, December 3, to Brussels. Passengers on the flight enjoy high-speed broadband access and data services, including Internet connectivity for mobile phones.
The A330-20 equipped with the Panasonic Avionics Global Communications Suite will be used for long-haul flight tos key European cities including Milan, Dublin, Manchester, and Frankfurt.
Etihad Airways’ CEO, James Hogan, expressed his excitement with the project, citing the 10-year billion dollar agreement with Panasonic a crucial investment that will reward its customers and loyal patrons with “dynamic and engaging in-flight entertainment options.” Mr Hogan said that the “Wi-Fly” will provide passengers with Internet speeds comparable to what they would enjoy at work or at home.
The airline said that it hopes to equip 10 more aircrafts with the service by the first quarter of 2013. Currently, Etihad also operate six other aircrafts with on-board connectivity through a partnership with OnAir. The Wi-Fly service will charge gues US$13.95 for one hour of service, and US$24.95 for 24 hours of use.
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South Korean tech giant Samsung may have lost the patent battle to Apple but the legal blow has been softened as its premier device, the Galaxy S3, surpassed the iPhone 4S to become the world’s best selling smartphone.
The research firm Strategy Analytics released the latest study before the launch the iPhone 5. If combined however, the two Apple device had higher sales than Samsung’s flagship smartphone. Still, the reports were impressive. The S3 overtook the 4S during the third quarter, selling over 18 million units in just three months.
Samsung said that sales weren’t as fast as most people assumed as many consumers temporarily withheld from purchasing the S3 with the expected launch of the iPhone 5. Apple sold 16.2 million 4S smartphones, while the iPhone 5 which was launched mid-September, sold around six million.
Experts attribute the S3’s success to Samsung’s extensive distribution of the device across several countries outside of the US. Supper through operator subsidies also contributed to the success of the Galaxy smartphone.
Fleet-tracking solutions firm Navman Wireless is partnering with Telstra for its Qube 4 GPS fleet tracking unit, the company’s latest tracking solution. The device allows fleet managers to track drivers, locate them and communicated with them more quickly and accurately. The Qube 4 is also the only GPS Fleet Management solution approved for uses in the Next G Network.
The new generation device’s improved performance is thanks in part to Telstra’s Next G Network, which allows for more reliable, real-time communication. Navman boasts that the Qube 4 is the fastest in the market right now. The partnership with Telstra also extends to regions without the Next G Network coverage. Businesses can continue operating in remote regions using Iridium’s satellite communications device which can be added to the tracking unit.
Navman Wireless Asia-Pacific vice-president, Ian Daniel, said that the satellite communications services would benefit mining and construction industries, as well as other resource sectors operating in remote locations. According to Mr Daniel, customers can customize the criteria when using the satellite service allowing them more control in managing costs in the use of the technology. Quake Global manufactures the modem used in the satellite communications devices.