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AeroMobile gears up for Qantas onboard cellphone

25th September 2008 - 01:00 GMT | by The Shephard News Team

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NOT to be outdone by rival OnAir - which will see its inflight chat, email and, ultimately, Internet access services introduced aboard the first Qantas Airbus A380 next month (Inflight Online, September 23 – AeroMobile is reminding the world that its onboard mobile phone service will be rolled out on the Australian carrier’s domestic fleet in the coming months.

The AeroMobile service will allow passengers travelling on Qantas’ Airbus A330-200s and Boeing 767-300s within Australia and on routes to New Zealand to send and receive email and text messages via their own mobile phones, BlackBerries and other GSM devices. The air-to-ground link is supported by Inmarsat’s 432kbit/sec SwiftBroadband service.

Qantas adopted the AeroMobile service following a single-aircraft evaluation from April 2007 to January this year. “That project proved there was a substantial demand from passengers for the ability to keep in touch with colleagues, friends and family on both shorter routes and longer transcontinental flights,” says AeroMobile chief executive Bjorn-Taale Sandberg. “Users wanting to send or receive a text will require only a GSM phone and a global roaming account. If they want to send or receive emails they will need a GPRS-enabled device like a Blackberry or an appropriately equipped laptop.”

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