South African business travelers can expect to get Internet access on some domestic flights through WirelessG/G-Connect’s in-flight Wi-Fi service as soon as next month (May 2012).
That means businessmen and women will soon be able to enjoy the benefits of online connectivity while flying from city to city in South Africa.
The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) approved the installation and use of in-flight Wi-Fi enabled equipment on board South African commercial aircraft in October 2011, clearing the way for a commercial in-flight Internet service.
Final pricing has not been released yet, but WirelessG/G-Connect previously indicated that people can expect to pay less for in-flight Wi-Fi than what they pay for 3G data.
The company highlighted that the idea is not to charge per MB, but rather provide uncapped access for the duration of the flight on a fixed fee basis. WirelessG said that the G-Connect in-flight vouchers are likely to cost between R50 and R100 each.
The service will become available on Mango flights first, with plans to cover other airlines in future.
WirelessG is using technology from Row 44 to deliver broadband access on South African aircraft. The technology makes use of satellite-based connectivity for back-haul purposes with speeds of up to 4Mbps.
WirelessG has partnered with Vodacom who will provide the needed satellite services to provide in-flight connectivity.