Virgin America Becomes First Airline To Offer Gogo's Faster ATG-4 Inflight WiFi Service Fleetwide

New ATG-4 WiFi Brings Increased Bandwidth and Faster Browsing Speeds for Flyers at 35,000 Feet

Dec 17, 2014, 10:00 ET from Virgin America

SAN FRANCISCO, Dec. 17, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Virgin America, the Silicon Valley-based airline known for its innovative and business-friendly amenities, today announces the fleetwide rollout of Gogo's faster ATG-4 WiFi service – with the completion this week of ATG-4 WiFi installation on its Airbus A319 plane "Jane" (N526VA).  In 2009, Virgin America became the first airline to offer Gogo Inflight WiFi service on every flight – a distinction the airline still maintains today.  With a base of tech-forward flyers, the airline has similarly invested in the next generation of WiFi technology – with the rollout of Gogo's enhanced WiFi product to all 53 of Virgin America's Airbus A320 Family aircraft. ATG-4 offers a faster average guest experience with peak speeds of 9.8 Mbps to each aircraft – more than triple the peak speed of the 3.1 Mbps available with the first generation of inflight WiFi. To help celebrate this milestone, Virgin America and Gogo are asking guests to share their best "office in the sky" moment on Twitter and Instagram with the hashtag #OfficeInTheSky for a chance to win a round trip Main Cabin flight for two on Virgin America, a brand new iPad or complimentary Gogo Inflight WiFi service for one year (full terms and conditions available here).

"Even though Virgin America was the first airline to offer fleetwide WiFi in 2009 – and still today remains the only domestic airline to offer WiFi access on every aircraft in its fleet – our goal is to continue to innovate and stay ahead of the competition," said Mark Bianchi, Senior Vice President of Technical Operations at Virgin America. "Our team looks forward to reaching the milestone this week of becoming the first airline to install Gogo's enhanced ATG-4 service across our entire fleet of 53 Airbus A320 Family aircraft. This upgrade is the latest in a series of investments aimed at keeping our tech-forward travelers more connected, productive and entertained at 35,000 feet."

With mood-lit cabins, fleetwide WiFi, custom-designed leather seating, power outlets, personal touch-screen entertainment platforms, confirmed seating and new, quieter aircraft with three classes of service, Virgin America has attracted a loyal following of business travelers for its "office in the sky" amenities. In a recent 2014 survey conducted by Travel + Leisure and Fortune magazine, Virgin America's tech-forward features helped the airline to be named the "Best Domestic Airline for Business Travel."

"Virgin America remains on the cutting edge of offering the best experiences to its passengers and we are excited to continue to work with them on creating a better WiFi experience," said Dave Bijur, Gogo's regional president. "ATG-4 has had a significant impact on the market and we continue to see positive results from this newer technology."

Gogo's ATG-4 technology includes three industry-leading innovations: the addition of directional antennas and dual modems on each aircraft and the deployment of EV-DO Rev B technology on Gogo's airborne and ground networks. Utilizing directional antennas and dual modem technology, ATG-4 increases overall peak connection speeds and ensures a more reliable connection to each and every passenger on board who chooses to connect.

Since its launch in August 2007, Virgin America has been on a mission to create innovation in the air. The airline's in-flight connectivity milestones have included:

  • November 2008: Virgin America streams the first ever "air-to-ground" video stream to YouTube Live - YouTube's first official real-world user event from the airline's first WiFi-enabled aircraft
  • February 2009: The CBS Early Show airs the first-ever live broadcast transmission from a commercial plane – a Virgin America Airbus A320 – via the airline's in-flight WiFi
  • May 2009: Virgin America becomes the first U.S. domestic airline to achieve fleetwide WiFi
  • December 2014: Virgin America is the first U.S. airline to offer next-gen, Gogo ATG-4 Inflight WiFi on every plane

In addition to a Main Cabin that offers custom-designed leather seating with a deeper, more comfortable pitch, the airline's First Class cabin offers plush white leather seating with 55 inches of pitch, 165 degrees of recline and lumbar massagers. The carrier's Main Cabin Select service offers 38-inches of pitch, free food and cocktails, an all-access pass to media content, dedicated overhead bins and priority check-in/boarding. The Red® in-flight entertainment platform offers guests their own seatback touch-screen TV, with more than 20 films, live TV, Google Maps, videogames, a 3,000 song library and an on-demand menu, which allows flyers to order a cocktail or snack from their seatback any time during a flight.  Virgin America's airport lounge – The Loft – is located at LAX and its Elevate frequent flyer program offers no black-outs or restrictions on rewards seats with three levels of status including Elevate Gold and Elevate Silver.

The airline continues to expand its network across the country with flights to Austin, Boston, Cancun, Chicago, Dallas Love Field, Fort Lauderdale, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Los Cabos, Newark, New York (JFK and LGA), Orlando, Palm Springs (seasonal), Portland, Puerto Vallarta, San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle and Washington D.C. (IAD and DCA).

Video of the ATG-4 installation on one of Virgin America's A320 Family aircraft can be found here.

Photos of Virgin America's unique aircraft can be found here and broadcast quality b-roll can be found here.

About Virgin America:  Known for its mood-lit cabins, three beautifully designed classes of service and innovative fleetwide amenities — like touch-screen personal entertainment, WiFi and power outlets at every seat, Virgin America has built a loyal following of flyers and earned a host of awards since launching in 2007 — including being named both the "Best U.S. Airline" in Condé Nast Traveler's Readers' Choice Awards and "Best Domestic Airline" in Travel + Leisure's World's Best Awards for the past seven consecutive years. For more: www.virginamerica.com

About Gogo:  Gogo is a leading global aero-communications service provider that offers in-flight Internet, entertainment, text messaging, voice and a host of other communications-related services to the commercial and business aviation markets. Gogo has more than 2,000 commercial aircraft equipped with its services on more than 10 major airlines. More than 6,000 business aircraft are also flying with its solutions, including the world's largest fractional ownership fleets. Gogo also is a factory option at every major business aircraft manufacturer. Gogo has more than 800 employees and is headquartered in Itasca, IL, with additional facilities in Broomfield, CO, and various locations overseas. Connect with us at www.gogoair.com and www.business.gogoair.com.

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SOURCE Virgin America



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