Anuvu’s EVP Connectivity, Mike Pigott, sees harnessing change as essential to growth
The Dual-Panel Ka-Band inflight Connectivity Antenna System (DPSAA) made by Anuvu and partner company QEST may have been center stage at this year’s APEX EXPO, but behind the new technology, the company was touting something much more fundamental in its business approach — flexibility and customer service.
“The way I look at it is airlines do not like disruptions,” said Mike Pigott, Anuvu’s EVP Connectivity. “So we want to get in there with the smoothest solution that has the best investment value.”
The dual-panel antenna is built for easy handoffs and the ability for airlines to take advantage of connectivity from either GEO or LEO satellites with only minor modifications. The hybrid network has been part of Anuvu’s development plans since 2015 when the company started working on its second-generation antenna. The antenna’s open-architecture design is built to meet airlines’ anticipated need for solutions that will accommodate different system components and connectivity options.
While such a system may mean a larger initial outlay in cost, Pigott said potential customers should weigh the investment against a total cost of ownership that maximizes value in much the same way as electric cars. While more expensive to buy, long-term savings are realized as less gasoline is purchased over the life of the car, he pointed out. In the case of connectivity technology, initial investments often can future-proof an airline and provide the ability to adapt and change alongside the rapidly evolving industry.
One example of adaptability Pigott mentioned was Anuvu’s efforts for its largest US customer, Southwest Airlines, when the carrier launched service to Hawaii. Once the announcement was made, Pigott said Anuvu had arranged satellite capacity to cover the Pacific for the airline within 90 days. This ability to harness change will be important in a fast-moving segment of the airline passenger experience.
“I would predict by Hamburg (Aircraft Interiors Expo) next year it will be like an explosion of news, ideas and opportunity as we see connectivity become a core part of what it means to be an airline,” said Pigott.
This story was written with files from Stephanie Philp