ST Engineering iDirect, the market leader in satellite ground infrastructure across the mobility sector, has been in the business of delivering mobility solutions for more than 20 years.
Our platforms enable IFC networks for the top three global high-throughput satellite (HTS) operators and top service providers. We are serving more than 50% of the market today, based on more than 3,400 active aircraft.
Our platform enables airlines and service providers to build IFC solutions that support passenger connectivity, crew communications, flight operations, and maintenance applications. We are committed to delivering advanced performance through key innovations, such as support for electronically steered antennas and 5G architectures.
The Service Provider Opportunity
With nearly every major airline rolling out or considering some form of IFC, service providers must work with a flexible technology solution built to maximize value and minimize the total cost of ownership. Today, HTS are positioned to dramatically improve performance for the commercial airline market. However, aero VSAT network operators need to think beyond data rates on individual airplanes and plan how they source, integrate and manage a global pool of bandwidth to automatically allocate resources as they are needed.
Service providers that can enable airlines to best leverage in-flight connectivity and gain a clear business advantage in terms of customer loyalty, crew productivity and company profitability will be at an advantage.
Revenue models that can entice passengers is still one of the biggest IFC obstacles. While the retail business model is the most prominent, passengers have largely demonstrated that they do not want to pay for onboard Wi-Fi. Some airlines are experimenting with a hybrid model with success. Additional revenue opportunities exist for satellite operators and service providers to develop “big data” solutions for customers to control, analyze or improve existing business processes including aircraft telemetry, health monitoring, passenger applications, real-time navigation and traffic optimization.