One of the best systems on the market today designed for use on smaller aircraft is Gogo Business Aviation’s AVANCE L3. The L3 comes in the lightest and smallest form factor available for inflight Wi-Fi, enabling passengers and crew to be connected to email, browse the web, or access other value-added features such as moving maps and flight information.
Cirrus Aircraft recently selected the L3 to be installed as a factory option on new production G2+ Vision Jet aircraft. The Vision Jet is the first “Personal Jet” to add Gogo’s inflight connectivity service, joining the list of aircraft manufacturers that offer Gogo equipment from the factory including light jets, and even turboprops, such as the Pilatus PC–12 and the Beechcraft King Air 360.
“The need and desire to be connected in flight is not bound by aircraft size or aircraft mission–everyone who flies in their own aircraft deserves to have fast, reliable connectivity,” said Mark Sander, vice president of OEM sales for Gogo. “The AVANCE L3 is the best solution for owners and operators of smaller aircraft who want, fast, reliable inflight connectivity on a proven and reliable network.”
Pilots appreciate the redundancy of data and have made connecting to the internet a part of their routine when flying. Cirrus’s selection of the AVANCE L3 highlights the increasing desire for connectivity on aircraft of all sizes and mission types.
“As pilots, we’re always looking down the road, checking weather, communicating with the office, our scheduler, maintenance – you name it,” said Gary Stone, assistant chief pilot, Meredith Corporation. “The instant ability to communicate is just a game-changer.”
For many pilots, the decision to add connectivity has helped not just their own efficiency in the cockpit but has enabled them to help others who’ve found themselves without a signal or way to call for help.
There was a time I was flying near Rifle, Colo., and a small plane below me was getting lost in the mountains and couldn’t contact Air Traffic Control,” said Tony Fizer, executive vice president and chief pilot for Prime Insurance Company, who recalled that he also had trouble contacting ATC on the radio, but he was able to use his tablet to access electronic charts and communicate critical insight directly to the other pilot on the radio. “I was able to get out my iPad, connect to the Wi-Fi, and communicate with the pilot about how to navigate the area safely and direct him away from terrain.”
Without reliable inflight Wi-Fi, this pilot would have been alone and stuck in a dangerous situation.
There are additional benefits inflight connectivity provides to pilots. One pilot shared a story about his family driving to the airport he had planned to fly into but after he got a runway condition report, he re-routed his flight and was able to alert his family from the air to meet him at his new destination.