California-based Viasat has signed a Memorandum of Understand (MOU) with Russia’s Gazprom Space System and telco TMC. The agreement will supply connectivity for in-flight connectivity (IFC) for airlines flying into and over Russia.
Viasat says: “Russia is a key region for in-flight communications, comprised of 11 time zones, and providing, among other things, the shortest flight routes between North America and Asia, as well as between Europe and Asia. Per the MOU, the three companies will work in partnership to provide Russian and international airlines IFC service when flying into and over Russian Federation airspace. This cooperation is expected to offer Viasat’s global airline customers roaming connectivity when flying over Russia; providing IFC services on domestic flights within Russia; and enabling Russian and international airlines access to roam onto the Viasat global satellite network when outside of Russian airspace.”
“The MOU establishes an initial roaming agreement between current Viasat and GSS satellites, with Viasat operating in Russia leveraging TMC’s telecom license. The partnership commenced with Viasat procuring access to Ku-band capacity on the GSS satellite, Yamal-401, while creating a path for Viasat and GSS to leverage capabilities on future satellite constellations,” adds Viasat.
Keven Lippert, CCO at Viasat, commented, “Our MOU with GSS and TMC is an important next step in establishing a global IFC roaming alliance that will ensure airlines have access to uninterrupted, feature-rich IFC services when flying into and over Russia. We look forward to achieving strong synergies across satellite platforms in order to advance the global IFC market.”