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Will Europe Ever Get In Flight Wifi?

It’s hard to avoid the growing demand for wifi – restaurants, buses, the tube, parks and more. So why is in flight wifi still a distant dream?

Many US airlines offer in flight wifi for domestic flights using technologies based on the ground. These airlines use now redundant bandwidths previously used by analogue TV to provide wifi on their aircrafts. Google provides the service across various airlines, providing connectivity direct to the passenger, with no money passing between the hands of the airline.

Europe would require a more complex and expensive satellite system in order to provide an in flight wifi service which is why we haven’t seen or heard of the service hitting Europe.

Another factor holding Europe back is the different frequency and licensing requirements across the numerous European countries, this would make the roll out of a continental service a lengthy and complicated process. Alternatively offering in flight wifi on domestic flights in Europe is unlikely due to short haul services not proving economical, a hurdle the US does not have to overcome due to the size of the nation.

So the introduction of wifi on planes is still a long way off so save your browsing for the tube.


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