Gulfstream has received US Federal Aviation Administration approval for a modification that allows operators of G450 and G550 aircraft to benefit from enhanced connectivity.

Covering the installation of the Satcom Direct Router, the enhancement simplifies cabin communications on the two twinjets.

“This equipment elevates the airborne office to a new level,” says Mike West, vice-president, product support sales and new business development, Gulfstream.

“The addition of a smart router allows for more communications options in the cabin, including Satcom Direct’s GlobalVT, which allows passengers to use their personal smartphones to call and text in flight.”

The SDR also supports mobile applications for onboard cabin services, including moving map and flight tracker, command and control of satellite links, and real-time connection status reporting.

The SDR interfaces with ViaSat’s Ku-band and Inmarsat’s SwiftBroadband systems, and is designed to work with future connectivity offerings, including those operating on the Ka-band.

Installation of the SDR and accompanying software is standard on new G550 and G450 aircraft and available as a retrofit for in-service examples.

The new equipment, which weighs less than 10lb (4.5kg), is designed to be installed inside the cabin or avionics bay.

Gulfstream is pursuing similar supplemental type certificates from the FAA to add the enhancement to G650/G650ER, GV and GIV aircraft.