Press Release
Press Release

Air France trials ‘Mobile OnAir’
Air France trials ‘Mobile OnAir’
January 16, 2008

Air France on 20 December 2007 launched inflight connectivity on select international flights via the Mobile OnAir system.

During the six-month trial, passengers can send and receive SMS, MMS (Multimedia Messaging Service), and e-mails using their mobile phones and personal Wi-Fi data devices onboard one Air France Airbus 318 aircraft operating European routes.

The cost of text messages and e-mails will be charged by the passenger’s usual network operator, and charges “are in line with international roaming rates,” according to Air France.

Voice phone calls currently are not allowed, but it is anticipated that passengers will be able to make and receive phone calls during the second half of the trial. The voice service will be regulated by cabin crew to maintain the comfort of all passengers.

Air France will use customer feedback and comments gathered in a 20-question survey during the trial to determine whether the service will be implemented throughout the fleet.

Mobile OnAir uses a Pico cell installed on the aircraft to interface with mobile phones in the cabin. A modem transmits the data and calls to a satellite, which relays data to on-ground operators. Data and calls are then routed to the passenger’s usual telephone network.

Information about the service is available in a leaflet in seat pockets and in the cabin crew announcements.

Air France is the first airline to use the Mobile OnAir system on international flights, said Benoit Debains, OnAir CEO.

Patrick Roux, Air France Executive Vice President Marketing, said: “We are seizing every opportunity to offer customers the latest technological innovations, while continuing to make their travel comfort and well-being our main priority.”