Avidyne Corp. and Globalstar Inc. announced a “strategic partnership” Feb. 23 that will bring new satellite-based communication tools to general aviation cockpits, with the two companies promising prices will be within the reach of owner-operators and small businesses.
Avidyne will build and market new avionics and onboard devices that allow aircraft to access Globalstar’s upgraded network, creating an onboard, online gateway with enhanced bandwidth (256 kbps) that carries both voice and data communications.
By leveraging Globalstar’s new technology, dubbed Sat-Fi, a “second-generation satellite network and the ground infrastructure upgrades due to go live in the next few months, together we will provide increased aircraft connectivity for our customers at unrivaled value,” Avidyne President and CEO Dan Schwinn said in a news release. “I expect that mass adoption of airborne internet hotspots across the full range of GA and business aviation aircraft will spur a host of innovative mobile device and cloud based applications that will enhance aircraft safety and utility in ways we can’t currently imagine.”
Globalstar is the parent of Spot LLC, which makes a range of products including locator beacons and satellite telephones for GA and other applications.
“We are laser-focused on continuing to make Globalstar the market leader for the growing data communications needs around the world,” said Globalstar Chairman and CEO Jay Monroe. “This partnership represents another step forward in that endeavor as we find ways to adapt our technology to the needs of the aviation sector.”
The companies said the new network will allow current users of subscription-based weather and other services more flexibility and capability, including the ability to access the full range of information and data currently available online.
Avidyne said specific product announcements will follow.