In-flight WiFi on most commercial aircraft by 2022

A report from Juniper Research has forecast that commercial aircraft adopting in-flight Wi-Fi services will reach 14,419 globally by 2022, up from an estimated 5,243 in 2017. This will mean that over half of the global fleet will offer such services in 2022, compared with just under a quarter this year.

This increase will primarily be driven by the impact of the BYOD (bring your own device) trend, despite increased security concerns from several governments, primarily the US, which has given rise to the so-called ‘laptop ban’.

The research found that in-flight wireless streaming is increasingly being offered as an IFE (in-flight entertainment) option, based on a lower installation cost and weight savings versus seatback systems.

Indeed, with many vendors offering combined wireless streaming and Wi-Fi connectivity services, Juniper predicted that wireless streaming will replace seatback in-flight entertainment on most short haul flights, with seatback IFE being increasingly reserved for longer flights with premium carriers.

With BYOD, and thus consumer take-up encouraged by wireless services, monthly in-flight entertainment revenues are forecast to rise by 30 per cent on average per aircraft over the forecast period.

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