Tata company wins DoT license to provide in-flight connectivity

Air travelers in India will soon be able to enjoy Internet like they do on the ground, after Tatanet Services, a wholly owned subsidiary of NELCO Limited, won an in-flight, maritime connectivity licence from Department of Telecommunications.

“The IFMC license will make it possible to have uninterrupted access to voice, data and video services while also travelling on aircrafts, sailing vessels, cruise liners etc in India, using satellite technology,” NELCO said in a statement.

The licence will also help bring operational efficiencies to improve business productivity for the airlines and shipping companies, which were not so evolved until now, it added.

“Internet and voice communication while sailing or flying within Indian waters and airspace are important needs but not fulfilled so far due to regulatory restrictions,” NELCO Managing Director and CEO P J Nath said.

The licence for IFMC services for in-flight and maritime connectivity by DoT will now make it possible for people to access high quality broadband internet services and make voice calls while flying in Indian airspace and sailing in Indian waters, in the same manner that they do while at home or office, Nath added.

The company said that it has an advanced ground infrastructure and satellite coverage over India and currently serves the business-critical needs of various users like ATMs, petrol pumps, bank branches, off-shore rigs for oil and gas exploration among others.

The company is also in talks with the Department of Space (DoS) & ISRO to further augment its satellite infrastructure  to offer high quality IFMC services, the statement said.

NELCO, a part of the USD 116 billion Tata group, is focused in providing VSAT services for a wide-range of sectors like banking, renewable energy, telemedicine, education, oil and gas exploration.