Boeing to Offer In-Flight Internet Services

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The Boeing Company, Seattle, last week said it would offer high speed Internet access to air travelers.

The new service, called Connexion, will give airline passengers access to the Internet, e-mail, television news and other information. The company said the service will use a satellite network and cost about as much as a cellular phone call.

Boeing has signed agreements to use infrastructure and services from CNN Inflight Services, Mitsubishi Electric Corp., Finmeccanica Company, Loral Skynet, Matsushita Avionics Systems and CNBC. The aerospace technology developer also is negotiating with airline partners as well as content and service suppliers.

"Boeing intends to be a leader in the new mobile economy, and that means helping our airline customers and their passengers stay globally connected at all times," said Phil Condt, Boeing chairman/CEO. "In commercial air travel today, you have a few choices: You can read a book or a magazine or watch one of several movies. But soon when you can watch a live soccer match or e-mail family or shop online or keep an eye on your stocks, the airplane will begin to look like your home or office, and the experience of travel will change."

The service is available for installation on private business jets and will be available on commercial airlines in North America late next year. Boeing plans eventually to offer Connexion globally.

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