Internet, Phone For Any Size Airplane

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Surfing the Internet while flying the airways has mostly been reserved for bizjet passengers and, most recently, for those on a few airlines. But a Virginia company says it's developed a combination satellite phone and Wi-Fi system for any size aircraft, including light singles. "In response to significant customer recommendations, we have developed the CIS-100 as a simple low cost device that will give any aircraft the added safety, convenience and connectivity that owners and operators have only recently been able to acquire for their much larger, more sophisticated business and personal aircraft," said Jeff Saucedo, of International Communications Group. The news release issued by the company did not define affordable but it did address the size and weight issues that have also been an impediment to light aircraft installations.

The company says the basic unit weighs 3.5 pounds and is flange-mounted but provides up to three phone connections, intercom calling, call transfer, conferencing and follow-on dialing. It can be teamed with the company's NxtMail Server to provide Wi-Fi. The system taps the Iridium satellite network for global reach. The system can also be a revenue producer for fractionals and charters with the addition of credit card readers to bill users for the time they use.