February 3 2021  |  Connectivity & Satellites

Panasonic covers Asia-Pacific with XTS satellite

By Rick Lundstrom

Panasonic Avionics today announced its first extreme high throughput satellite (XTS) entered service over the Asia-Pacific region.

The APSTAR-6D satellite is Panasonic Avionics’ latest investment in in-flight connectivity for passengers on commercial aircraft. It is an important part of its third-generation communications (Gen-3) network of high speed, high bandwidth Ku-band satellites.

The company says 2,544 aircraft will be installed with its connectivity service to its Gen-3 network within the next month. More than 1,000 commercial aircraft are committed to being installed with its connectivity services and linked to the Gen-3 network from the outset.

In addition to in-flight WI-FI, Panasonic offers live television with the world’s only global live sports channels delivered in partnership with IMG, an integrated solution with OneMedia to deliver real-time ads, real-time transactions that open up a huge range of in-flight retail possibilities, and the ability to personalize the passenger experience through solutions such as Panasonic Avionics’ Companion App.

“Today is a milestone moment for Panasonic Avionics as we go live with the newest generation of in-flight connectivity,” said Ken Sain, Chief Executive Officer of Panasonic Avionics Corporation. “Our third-generation communications network delivers the targeted, flexible use of extreme high throughput capacity, ensuring we can meet the needs of our airline customers with cost-effective and reliable high bandwidth services well into the future.”

APSTAR-6D was jointly designed by APSATCOM and Panasonic Avionics. It will provide airlines with multiple gigahertz of new Ku-band capacity over China and high-density routes around East Asia, including Tokyo, Seoul, Beijing, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia using narrow XTS spot beams.

In addition, APSTAR-6D provides high throughput satellite (HTS) coverage over its full field of view including the Pacific Ocean, Indian Ocean, Australia and the Southern Oceans down to Antarctica, which includes areas not served by any other HTS satellite. Tailoring the capacity to areas of demand will provide Panasonic Avionics’ airline customers with better service, unprecedented coverage and the ability to dramatically increase throughput. This opens the doors for airlines to further customize their connectivity offerings to meet the evolving expectations of their passengers.

Panasonic Avionics is currently engaged in active and ongoing trials with airlines to demonstrate the high data rate capabilities of its Gen-3 network. The company expects that airline passengers flying in the region served by APSTAR-6D will also take advantage of the enhanced connectivity that XTS delivers to use high-bandwidth apps in flight.

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