ViaSat upgrades SAS onboard Wifi to 12Mbps

09 September 2016 | Jason McGee-Abe


As part of a £44m investment plan, Scandinavian Airlines (SAS) has teamed up with ViaSat to upgrade its entire short and medium haul fleet with onboard high-speed Wifi.

By partnering with ViaSat, SAS is rolling out Wifi speeds of 12 Mbps and higher on 100 aircraft. Each passenger and cabin crew will have access to the upgraded onboard Wifi service strengthening the gate-to-gate internet access.

“The upgrade we implemented on our long haul aircraft gained a very positive reception and we are now upgrading our short and medium haul fleet, which will also include high-speed Wifi with speeds that enable time onboard to be utilised for work or to relax and enjoy a streamed movie or TV series,” said Rickard Gustafson, president and CEO of SAS.

“As both passengers and crew onboard are now connected, we can take our personal service to greater heights while continuing to develop our digital, smart solutions that make life easier.”

Mark Dankberg, chairman and CEO of ViaSat, added: “In working with SAS, we are making the internet accessible, fast and easy to-use at 35,000 feet. Only by coupling the ViaSat end-to-end service platform with Eutelsat’s European satellite connectivity, can we enable airlines, like SAS, to offer a best-in-class onboard WiFi service in Europe for free to EuroBonus-members and SAS Plus passengers.”

The Wifi onboard upgrades, along with cabin upgrades, are expected to amount to a total investment of approximately £44 million (SEK 500 million) over a three-year period.

The first aircraft with the new Wifi system will enter service in the second half of 2017.