Boeing has decided to make Panasonic Avionics' Ku-band satellite-supported Global Communications Suite (GCS) linefit offerable on its 777s.

A company spokesperson said: "Our intent is to make GCS offerable as an option going forward."

Turkish Airlines today announced it intends to take delivery of a 777-300ER fitted with GCS - including in-flight Internet and IPTV - on 23 September.

"We've done our part, and made the hardware available," said the Boeing spokeswoman, noting that Turkish "just needs to activate it" once it receives regulatory authority in Turkey.

Boeing previously offered its own Ku-based airborne Internet and IPTV in the form of Connexion by Boeing. But lack of demand prompted the airframer to shutter the unit in late 2006.

Last week, during the Airline Passenger Experience Association (APEX) conference and exhibition in Seattle, Boeing vice-president of marketing Randy Tinseth said the airframer was "looking at" providing connectivity as a linefit option on the long-delayed 787, but admitted it is "something we haven't committed to at this point".

Meanwhile, airlines all over the world have begun equipping their aircraft with in-flight connectivity, including systems that operate over air-to-ground (ATG), L-band and Kufrom -band links. Ka-band connectivity is expected to take to the commercial skies next year when JetBlue Airways launches a service provided by its subsidiary, LiveTV, and partner ViaSat.

Source: Air Transport Intelligence news