ViaSat wins $73m in-flight connectivity extension with US government

By:
James Pearce
Published on:

Agreement with DISA sees the satellite company provide broadband and connectivity services to senior US leaders and VIP aircrafts in-flight

The US government has extended a contract with ViaSat that sees the satellite provider supply in-flight connectivity services on some government planes.

The contract, which is with the United States Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA), focuses on ViaSat providing high-quality broadband and connectivity services, via its global Ku- and Ka-band communications satellite network, to senior leader and VIP aircraft when in-flight.

It is an expansion of an existing deal, and was struck on 1 June, although ViaSat has only just announced the agreement. It is worth around $19,277,009 in 2017, while the overall agreement is worth $73,217,722.

ViaSat claims the service enables "an office in the sky" experience - with the ability to use the in-flight broadband connection to stream full-motion high-definition video en-route; maintain two-way communications through HD video conference calling or voice over internet protocol calls; access real-time intelligence and other location-based, live-sensor data for critical decision-making and more.

"Our DISA award extension validates the maturity and performance of our certified, field-proven, hybrid Ku-/Ka-band networked satellite system," said Ken Peterman, president of government systems at ViaSat. 

"We have continued to successfully pass critical testing milestones and meet key deliverables, as stated in our agreement with DISA, which led to this extension. We anticipate DISA will execute the next option based on our ability to meet in-flight connectivity and exceed cybersecurity expectations."

It comes as the ViaSat rival Inmarsat is eyeing up US telco partners to expand its own in-flight connectivity service into the region.