Korean Air has selected global communications company Viasat as the inflight connectivity provider for the flag carrier’s upcoming fleet of Airbus A321neo aircraft.

Korean Air will receive a total of 30 Airbus A321neos by 2027 as part of its fleet modernisation plan, which will be delivered with the global satellite company’s connectivity solution.

These will be operated on short and mid-haul flights between the airline’s main hub in Seoul and destinations across Asia.

Viasat inflight Wi-Fi

A recent passenger survey found that 89% of Korean respondents would be more likely to rebook with an airline if quality inflight Wi-Fi was available – compared to 82% globally.

“Today marks an important milestone for Korean Air, as we embark on our first inflight connectivity partnership. Our selection process started in 2018 and we’ve been focused on selecting the right solution that meets our business needs and can help us realise the untapped potential of our onboard experience,” said Kenneth Chang, Korean Air’s executive vice president and chief marketing officer.

“It was clear that Viasat’s technology was unparalleled and they understood our vision. The new connectivity system will be a fundamental part of our digital strategy and customer experience going forward. Coupled with the advanced features of our fuel-efficient, next-generation A321neo aircraft, we look forward to taking our passenger experience to the next level.”

Korean Air’s new A321neo fleet

“We are proud to add Korean Air, a leading airline, as a valued inflight connectivity customer in this major market,” said Jimmy Dodd, SVP and president, global enterprise and mobility, at Viasat.

“Key to our ability to service Korean Air’s new A321neo fleet is our robust satellite network, designed to deliver fast and reliable Wi-Fi for an exceptional passenger experience.”

The selection was secured in partnership with hardware provider Safran Passenger Innovations (SPI) to develop the solution required by Korean Air.

This included combining inflight connectivity (IFC) airtime and Safran’s Inflight Entertainment and Connectivity (IFEC) hardware.

This partnership will enable Korean Air to extend its digital passenger journey, providing opportunities for direct engagement with passengers as well as enhancing their inflight experience.
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