Rockwell Collins, Inmarsat Team on Ka-band Internet

Superfast global data service to launch in 2014.

Rockwell Collins and Inmarsat have entered into an exclusive partnership for the development, production and distribution of hardware to support Inmarsat's Global Xpress Ka-band Internet service for business jets, airliners and government airplanes.

The Inmarsat GX service will provide global in-flight Ka broadband connectivity at speeds of up to 50 megabits per second when the service begins in 2014. The capability, which Inmarsat says will be 100 times faster than its fastest data service offered today, will be part of the London company’s I-5 satellite constellation, due for launch in 2013.

“This world-class partnership is a game-changer for airborne connectivity,” said Steve Timm, vice president for Rockwell Collins. “Our long and proven track record in providing industry-leading connectivity solutions for business, commercial and government aviation, combined with the differentiated services of Inmarsat GX, will result in a compelling global broadband solution that will give passengers and operators the same level of connectivity in the air as they do on the ground.”

Rockwell Collins and Inmarsat have entered into negotiations that are expected to lead to definitive agreements for hardware production later this year.