Gogo Gives 5G Progress Update

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Gogo Business Aviation has completed several key milestones as it continues to develop its 5G air-to-ground (ATG) network and onboard equipment.

Ground Network
Gogo has installed the first two 5G antennas on a tower. With the antennas now installed, the company will conduct prototype testing of system performance.

“Gogo 5G will be the fourth ATG nationwide network Gogo has designed and built,” said Dave Glenn, senior vice president of customer operations for Gogo. “Deploying this first ground site antenna and leveraging our unparalleled ATG experience over 28 years will enable us to validate our design for a smooth product and service launch.”

Onboard System
Gogo completed development of its 5G air card prototypes and recently completed coast-to-coast flight testing of its 5G belly-mounted antennas to validate their performance. Additionally, Gogo conducted a flight test and successfully established a connection between the 5G antennas on the aircraft and the 5G antennas on the ground tower.

“The tests we’ve conducted and successfully passed validate what we modeled when we initially announced we would build a 5G network,” said Mike Syverson, senior vice president of engineering for Gogo. “Through the testing we’ve done so far, we now know that Gogo 5G is going to be better than we originally thought it would be.”

Data Center
Gogo has also successfully performed an end-to-end call using a 5G SIM card, from the onboard equipment to the cell site, through the data center to the internet, and back.

“What we’ve done is validate that our systems can talk to one another,” Syverson continued. “The antennas can talk to the cell site, which in turn can talk to the data center. There is a lot of software development to put those pieces together, and it’s all working very well.”

The Gogo 5G network is being designed for aircraft operating within the contiguous United States. Gogo, which has 349 patents in its portfolio, expects the nationwide 5G network to be available in the second half of 2022.