Air-to-ground and mid-air virtual wireless network improves inflight experience with reliable, high-performance connectivity
SUNNYVALE, Calif. and ORLANDO, Florida (HITEC 2010), June 21, 2010 – Meru Networks, Inc., (NASDAQ:MERU), the leader in 802.11n virtualised wireless LAN solutions for enterprise networking, and managed solution provider Aircell, the world’s leading provider of inflight connectivity, today announced commercial deployment of Meru’s virtualised wireless solution on aircrafts equipped with Aircell’s Gogo® Inflight Internet Service, a major milestone in their strategic partnership. This partnership transforms the passenger’s inflight microcell wireless experience to a more predictable and reliable service with Meru’s virtualised wireless solution.
Today, over 35 aircrafts are already equipped with Meru’s virtualised wireless solution and this will expand to several hundred by the end of the year. Passengers will now be able to experience connectivity 35,000 feet in the air that is as dependable as a wired internet service on the ground.
After winning the FCC auction for air-to-ground broadband frequencies in 2006, Aircell is now the world’s leading provider of inflight connectivity to airlines, business aviation, military, government, and specialty aircrafts across North America. To improve the passengers’ experience, Aircell needed a robust and predictable wireless solution that could support a large number of concurrent users connecting to the wireless network.
“Airplanes are one of the most extreme deployment scenarios. Many of the ways that you would adapt to a bad wireless service on the ground, such as changing signal strength, is not available in the air,” said Mr. Anand Chari, Aircell’s vice president of engineering. “Our passengers expect flawless wireless service inflight – they are bringing on board their iPads, gaming systems, mobile devices and laptops. It is our job to figure out how to support the proliferation of these wireless devices, and continue to improve the passengers’ experience.”
“Meru brings wireless performance predictability to unpredictable environments such as airports, inflight on airlines, cruise ships, hotels and event centres, hospitals, warehouses and manufacturing plants around the world,” said Anurag Lal, senior vice president of service providers at Meru Networks. “Our partnership with leading managed service provider, Aircell, further solidifies Meru’s virtualised wireless solution as the best choice for delivering reliable, Wireless-like-Wire™ performance in high-density, unpredictable environments where delivering an exceptional end-user experience is essential.”
Meru’s virtualised wireless solutions are certified by the FAA for use on all major commercial aircraft. In a Meru network, neighbouring access points all operate on the same channel and can transmit at the maximum power allowed by the FCC and similar regulatory agencies worldwide. This makes deployment much easier and provides pervasive coverage with up to 30% fewer access points than with legacy microcell systems. And with Meru’s Virtual CellTM, finite RF spectrum resources are efficiently combined into a virtual pool and the pool is partitioned dynamically to deliver performance that matches individual end-user device and application requirements. By doing so, the bandwidth contention inherent in legacy microcell products is avoided and a much larger number of wireless devices can access the network simultaneously, an ideal solution to support high-density environments such as airplanes.
Aircell is the world’s leading provider of airborne communications and a single-source, turnkey provider of equipment, service, and technical support. With a global sales and support presence, its products are offered by virtually every fixed- and rotor-wing airframe manufacturer in business aviation, and are installed aboard the world’s four largest fractional ownership fleets. As winner of an exclusive FCC frequency license in 2006, Aircell has built a revolutionary new mobile broadband network for commercial and business aviation. In 2008, the Aircell® Network and its inflight portal, known as Gogo®, revolutionized the commercial airline passenger flight experience by delivering a robust Internet experience at 35,000 feet. The Aircell Network provides airlines with connectivity to operations and a path to enhanced cabin services such as video, audio, television and more. A similar feature set is available to Business Aircraft operators. Aircell has facilities in Broomfield, Colorado, and Itasca, Illinois. Aircell’s vision is to give everyone the ability to stay In Touch, In Flight®. For more information about Aircell, please visit www.aircell.com.
Gogo®, powered by Aircell, turns a commercial airplane into a Wi-Fi hotspot with true inflight Internet access. Passengers with Wi-Fi enabled devices, such as laptops, smartphones and PDAs, can surf the Web, check e-mail, instant message, access a corporate VPN and more. For more information about Gogo, please visit www.gogoinflight.com. You can also follow “gogoInflight” on Twitter (www.twitter.com/gogoinflight) or on Facebook (www.facebook.com/gogoinflight).
2010 Aircell LLC. Aircell, Gogo and in touch, in flight are trademarks of Aircell or its affiliates. All rights reserved.
About Meru Networks
Founded in 2002, Meru Networks provides a virtualised wireless LAN solution that cost-effectively optimizes the enterprise network to deliver the performance, reliability, predictability and operational simplicity of a wired network, with the advantages of mobility. Meru’s solution represents an innovative approach to wireless networking that utilizes virtualization technology to create an intelligent and self-monitoring wireless network, and enables enterprises to migrate their business-critical applications from wired networks to wireless networks, and become all-wireless enterprises. Meru’s solutions have been adopted in all major industry vertical markets, including Fortune 500 enterprises, healthcare, education, retail, manufacturing, hospitality and government. Meru is headquartered in Sunnyvale, Calif., and has operations in the Americas, Europe, the Middle East and Asia Pacific. For more information, visit www.merunetworks.com or call (408) 215-5300.
This press release contains forward-looking statements regarding Meru Networks expectations, hopes, plans, intentions or strategies, including, but not limited to statements regarding the plans to expand Meru’s virtualised wireless solution to several hundred aircraft by the end of the year. These forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties, as well as assumptions that, if they do not fully materialize or prove incorrect, could cause our results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. The risks and uncertainties include those described in Meru Networks’ documents filed with or furnished to the Securities and Exchange Commission. All forward-looking statements in this press release are based on information available to Meru Networks as of the date hereof, and Meru Networks assumes no obligation to update these forward-looking statements.
Meru Networks is a registered trademark of Meru Networks, Inc. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.