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  • Telefonica News: Vueling and Telefónica will provide high-speed wifi over satellite in aircrafts April 10th, 2014

    - Thanks to this strategic alliance, Vueling passengers will enjoy the most advanced connectivity service and an experience similar to high-speed internet on the ground.
    - Telefónica will be responsible for integrating LiveTV's high-speed technology with Eutelsat's AIR ACCESS service using the KA-SAT satellite.

    Madrid, April 9th, 2014.- Vueling and Telefónica have reached an agreement to implement a high-speed wifi service in aircrafts, so that users will have a very similar navigation experience to that enjoyed on the ground.

    Thanks to this agreement, four of Vueling's Airbus A320s will have the service available during this year, making it the first European company to offer high-speed wifi, thereby laying the foundations for what the on-board connectivity model will be like. To date, this kind of data access was not possible on short distances in Europe such as Madrid-Barcelona, for example. This opens up a world of possibilities for passengers: consulting and answering email, updating their statuses on social networks or being connected to news and events in real time, among many other possibilities.

    Telefónica will be responsible for integrating LiveTV onboard systems and high-speed satellite terminals from ViaSat with Eutelsat AIR ACCESS mobile service via its KA-SAT satellite to provide a complete internet access solution in the air.

    Ka band satellite systems are unique for being able to offer a 20Mbps user experience in-flight that is similar to ADSL in the home. This makes a real difference compared to what is currently available. Though there are other technologies in the market, a new generation of Ka band satellites, also called High Throughput Satellites (HTS), enables passengers to use their electronic devices (smartphones or tablets) during the flight as if they were on the ground.

    Telefónica has selected Eutelsat as  provider of the satellite network and mobile service, while LiveTV will provide all the equipment on board the aircraft. LiveTV is also in charge of the process of obtaining the necessary certifications (STC) from the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) for the use of this technology in Vueling's Airbus A320s.

    About Vueling

    Vueling was launched in July 2004 with a fleet of two Airbus A320s, four routes and the aim of offering an excellent service to customers at competitive prices. Ten years later, Vueling operates over 250 routes in 117 cities in Europe, the Middle East and Africa; it has a fleet of 90 aircraft, 17 operational bases and has transported over 75 million passengers. From the outset, Vueling was committed to the use of technologies for the benefit of its customers, introducing seat allocation and issue of the boarding card the moment the booking was made, both on paper and on the mobile phone. In 2011, Vueling presented the first application in Europe and one of the first in the world to incorporate not only information but also a complete flight purchase system which enabled travellers to check in, seats to be allocated and customers’ booking history to be accessed. Subsequently, it has incorporated new services such as the Flight Status Manager and, very recently, Vueling presented to the world the first boarding card which you can carry on your wrist, on your Smartwatch.

    About Telefónica

    Telefónica is one of the largest telecommunications companies in the world by stock market capitalisation and number of customers. From that leading position in the industry, and with its mobile and landline telephony and broadband businesses as the key factors in its growth, Telefónica has focused on its strategy of becoming a leading company in the digital world. The company has a significant presence in 24 countries and a customer base of over 323 million accesses around the world. Telefónica has a strong presence in Spain, Europe and Latin America, where the company essentially concentrates its growth strategy.

    About LiveTV

    LiveTV, a fully-owned subsidiary of JetBlue Airways (Nasdaq: JBLU), is a leading provider of real-time in-flight entertainment systems and connectivity for commercial airlines. Founded in 1998 in Melbourne, Florida, LiveTV has installation and maintenance sites around the world to support commercial aircraft, with over 90,000 seats equipped with its products. Current clients include JetBlue, United, Frontier, Alitalia, Virgin Australia, WestJet and Azul. To obtain a complete list of products and partners or for more information, please visit www.livetv.net.

    About Eutelsat

    Established in 1977, Eutelsat Communications (NYSE Euronext Paris: ETL, ISIN code: FR0010221234) is one of the world's leading and most experienced operators of communications satellites. The company provides capacity on 36 satellites to clients that include broadcasters and broadcasting associations, pay-TV operators, video, data and Internet service providers, enterprises and government agencies. Eutelsat’s satellites provide ubiquitous coverage of Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia-Pacific and the Americas, enabling video, data, broadband and government communications to be established irrespective of a user’s location. Headquartered in Paris, with offices and teleports around the globe, Eutelsat represents a workforce of 1,000 men and women from 32 countries who are experts in their fields and work with clients to deliver the highest quality of service. For more about Eutelsat please visit www.eutelsat.com

    Source : Press release/Telefonica

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