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There is plenty of air-to-ground spectrum available in Europe. One target band for commercial broadband in planes will be in the 5GHz band. But systems won't be COTS LTE - there are some tweaks needed for doppler correction and obviously the airborne systems have some special EMC requirements. Antennas are nowadays typically built into the bottom of the plane right behind the pilots cabin. It is more than one antenna behind a single radome.


And i dont expect the cost to be attractive to even start using it for the first few years...


Which cost are you referring to?
Some Airlines in North America offer it for free today.


I wonder how they did bridge a distance of 100km by standard LTE on 2.6 GHz. Did they use tracking directional antennas? I doubt you can cover a significant angle of airspace in a 100km-radius (i.e. using a wide angle sector antenna) based on standard TX power levels.

In any case it will take years until there's Europe-wide coverage as there are just too many regulatory bodies involved.

Another approach would be to deploy MEO satellites which could significantly reduce latency and provide worldwide coverage, however at significantly higher costs than a ground-based system.


yes, devices in planes can use tracking antennas with a narrow beam (>10dBi range). Power levels are also higher (>30dBm). This leads to a system gain beyond 170dB. FSL @5GHz for 100km is below 150dB.


Just one example: EVDO based system covering continental US.



I wonder what solutions are used for bus and trains in order to provide Internet on the board.
Is any of mobile network like GPRS/UMTS/HSPA/LTE used or rather satellite based solutions.

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