OnAir to support SMS communication between airline, passenger

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OnAir has selected telecommunications specialist Halys to provide an SMS system that will allow its airline customers to communicate with individual passengers once on-board though personalized text messages.

The in-flight connectivity service provider, a joint venture between Airbus and SITA, says the SMS system will be operational from the first quarter of 2010 and integrated with OnAir's dedicated ground network infrastructure hosted by Monaco Telecom.

"As mobile check-in, mobile boarding, and SMS notifications through passengers' hand-held devices all become more common, this new OnAir service closes the last remaining gap in communications with air travellers," says OnAir.

It adds: "This ability to re-book a missed connection, issue a new boarding pass and gate number while passengers are still in the air, will bring a new proactive and efficient service to passengers."

To date, OnAir has announced 20 customers on four continents, including Ryanair, British Airways, TAM, Qatar Airways, Hong Kong Airlines and Royal Jordanian.