Some industry insiders say Lufthansa Technik is making great strides in advancing an onboard connectivity solution. So I did a bit of patent snooping on Google (as one is apt to do) and came across the 2007-published EP1758269, a "device and method for use of a mobile telephone on board an aircraft". Is this what those folks were talking about? And does it somehow fit into a broader agenda for the Lufthansa unit?
Key par from the abstract:
The arrangement has an Internet protocol (IP)/global system for mobile communication (GSM) converter to convert Internet protocol (IP) data into mobile radio data and vice versa. A set of GSM gateways transmit/receive the radio data to/from different stationary mobile radio networks. An antenna on board of a vehicle transmits/receives IP data to/from a base station. A global system for mobile communication (GSM)/Internet protocol (IP) converter converts the mobile radio data into the IP data and vice versa. An independent claim is also included for a method for connecting a mobile phone, which is situated on board of a vehicle e.g. aircraft, land vehicle, water craft, and space vehicle, with a stationary mobile radio network.