A new day may be coming regarding how air passengers access the Internet. The Seamless Air Alliance just published a new standard for inflight connectivity. This is something that has never been done before. Does that mean hassle-free Internet connectivity is coming to the skies?
The first thing you may be wondering is exactly what the Seamless Air Alliance is all about. The second is why you should care about a document that's been put out by this group. The Seamless Air Alliance is actually an international collaboration of airlines, technology leaders and suppliers that was created to improve connectivity in the airline market. Its list of members includes Virgin Atlantic, SoftBank, Boingo, Etihad Airways, Panasonic, Nokia, Air France, AeroMexico, Sprint, Delta and Airbus. That's actually just naming a few!
The big topics covered by the Seamless Air Alliance's standard for inflight connectivity are passenger experience and the enabling of mobile operators to expand service seamlessly. The Seamless Air Alliance is actually calling for the use of a single modular structure based on open interfaces for creating better connectivity. Members of the alliance see a landscape where those who supply and deliver connections are able to rapidly adopt new technologies instead of being forced to focus on the burdens of customizations or equipment replacements across fleets.
The Seamless Air Alliance appears to be asking for exactly what most passengers are also asking for when it comes to connectivity. The current landscape makes it difficult for air travelers to connect seamlessly when traveling through gates or boarding planes due to the use of proprietary technology throughout the airline industry. What's more, there is no uniform structure for accessing and paying for Wi-Fi connections across the airline industry. The end result is that many travelers are left feeling frustrated by things like lost productivity or extra fees when trying desperately to stay connected during the travel process.