Gogo is Gone. Long Live Intelsat?

By Anna Breuer on 13 July 2021
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Using Gogo on board an American flight to Chicago

The longstanding Gogo brand that eventually became as synonymous with in-flight Wi-Fi, as Xerox had become with photocopiers, starting over 13 years ago is no more.

Intelsat US announced the rebranding of the ubiquitous company it acquired last December.

The replacement for the Gogo brand was announced Tuesday.

While Connexion by Boeing was the first in-flight Wi-Fi service to be launched with any degree of success – this in 2004 with launch customer Lufthansa – Gogo was the first mass-market Wi-Fi offering.  Meanwhile, Connexion by Boeing folded several years after launch partly due to the expense of the satellite-based equipment each aircraft required.

Gogo first entered the in-flight connectivity business with its first customer, American Airlines, in 2008.  The original Gogo service uses air-to-ground technology, while newer systems use much faster satellite connectivity, although the ATG technology has increased in speed over the years as well.

The company’s customer list, in addition to American, includes Aer Lingus, Aeromexico, Air Canada, Alaska Airlines, British Airways, Delta Air Lines, Japan Airlines, United Airlines, and Virgin Atlantic.

Gogo first launched in 1991 as Aircell, providing analog-based voice communications to general aviation aircraft in North America.

Intelsat, while in bankruptcy, acquired  Gogo’s in-flight business in a deal valued at $400 million that was first announced in September 2020.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

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