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SAS Finally Adds In-flight Wifi

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Scandinavian Airlines System or SAS has launched in-flight Internet on its short and medium haul routes between Scandinavia and Europe.

The launch of the new Ka-band satellite-based high-speed in-flight connectivity will enable passengers on SAS flights to stream and work problem-free. Passengers can now stream their favorite movies, use social media, send images from their seat or answer their emails.

"We have made a big investment that will ensure that our customers enjoy the best inflight experience. Together with our recent fleet order, this will strengthen SAS' competitiveness even further and maintain our strong position in the Scandinavian market," said Rickard Gustafson, President and CEO of SAS.

SAS said that passengers will be able to start streaming and go online as soon as the aircraft is airborne. According to the Sweden-based airline, the in-flight internet service is ten times faster than traditional in-flight WiFi services.

Travelers in SAS Plus, EuroBonus Diamond and Gold members can enjoy free WiFi all the way. Passengers in Go, or Economy passengers, will have to pay 4.90 euros, or the equivalent in other currencies. SAS said that Silver members will be offered free WiFi in the launch campaign period from May to 19 August.

SAS WiFi is based on a satellite communication system supplied by Viasat Inc., a California-based company that supplies internet services to private and public organizations, the military and airlines, including the U.S. government aircraft, Qantas and Jetblue.

The Viasat Ka-Sat satellite is behind SAS WiFi. Ka-Sat orbits Earth at around 28,000 kilometers per hour and has 82 signal points around Europe. Every time a passenger accesses a website inflight, a signal is sent to and from a point on Earth.

SAS noted that WiFi has already been installed in 28 aircraft. By September, around 40 of its aircraft will have the new high speed WiFi installed. SAS expects the vast majority of its fleet to be WiFi enabled by the first quarter of 2020.

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