Gogo Inflight Internet
|Traded as||NASDAQ: GOGO|
|Headquarters||Itasca, Illinois, United States|
|Key people||Michael J. Small (CEO), Norman Smagley (CFO)|
|Revenue||US$ 233.5 million (FY 2012)|
|Operating income||US$ -32.5 million (FY 2012)|
|Net income||US$ -32.7 million (FY 2012)|
|Total assets||US$ 432.1 million (FY 2012)|
|Total equity||US$ 168.6 million (FY 2011)|
Gogo Inc is a provider of in-flight broadband Internet service and other connectivity services for commercial and business aircraft, headquartered in Itasca, Illinois. Gogo has equipped over 2,000 commercial and 6,000 business aircraft with their services making them the world leader in in-flight connectivity and a pioneer in in-flight entertainment. Using the Gogo network and service, passengers with laptops and other Wi-Fi enabled devices can get online on more than 2,000 commercial aircraft including all domestic mainline Delta Air Lines and nearly all of Delta's regional jets; all AirTran Airways and Virgin America flights; and select Air Canada, Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, Frontier Airlines, United Air Lines and US Airways flights.
Gogo began in 1991 in a barbecue restaurant in Denison, Texas, where company founder Jimmy Ray sketched his idea for an affordable telephone system for private airplanes on a paper napkin. Through a partnership with cellular providers, Gogo began as Aircell, providing analog-based voice communications on private aircraft in North America. By the late '90s Gogo had leveraged a satellite-based system to offer voice communication on overseas flights. The next step was to devise a way to bring in-air connectivity to a larger market. In 2006, Gogo was awarded the FCC's exclusive Air-To-Ground (ATG) 3Ghz broadband frequency license. In 2008, Gogo made their debut on commercial aircraft.
In June 2011, the company formally changed its name from Aircell to Gogo as part of a re-branding effort. Prior to the re-brand, Gogo's commercial air service was known as "Gogo Inflight Internet." Aircell remains the name of the company's business aviation division.
On June 20, 2013 Gogo announced that it has priced its initial public offering of 11 million shares of common stock at $17 per share. Gogo started trading June 21, 2013 on the NASDAQ Global Select Market under the ticker symbol "GOGO".
Connectivity and performance
Gogo provides continuous coverage with minimal lags in speed, detected when passing from one cell tower signal to the next. Gogo's connection speed is approximately 500–600 Kibibits per second for downloads and 300 Kibit/s for uploads Total bandwidth for the flight is approximately 3 Mbit/s.
Connection onboard can be similar (under optimal conditions) to the experience at Wi-Fi hotspots such as coffee shops and hotels in some but not all cases. Users report connectivity issues to streaming video such YouTube and HBO-GO. Some users reported Speedtest.net benchmarks above 3 Mbit/s, while another users reported low Speedtest.net benchmark results such as 0.03 Mbit/s down and 0.27 up. The user connects to the gogoinflight network and registers in the same way they would on the ground. The network becomes accessible as soon as electronic devices are approved for use after take-off.
Gogo uses a variety of advanced technologies to keep passengers connected in air. Below are the current technologies they use.
Air-To-Ground (ATG) Gogo's ATG network is a cellular based network that has more than 160 towers in the continental U.S., Alaska and soon, Canada. The towers are cellphone towers that have been outfitted to point their signals at the sky rather than along the ground. The aircraft picks up the signal through a receiver installed on its underside. When it reaches the aircraft, the data signal is distributed throughout the cabin via a Wi-Fi system.
ATG-4 Gogo's ATG-4 service has enhanced the existing network (ATG) and improves per aircraft capacity through the addition of Directional Antenna, Dual Modem and EV-DO Rev. B technologies. This new platform is backwards-compatible and allows for upgrades to existing ATG systems through low-cost retrofits. ATG-4 is expected to enhance Gogo's existing ATG network and deliver peak speeds from current performances of up to 3.1 Mbit/s to up to 9.8 Mbit/s per aircraft.
Ka-band satellite Gogo was named a service provider for Inmarsat's Global Xpress satellite service in November, 2011. Inmarsat also selected Gogo's business aviation subsidiary, Aircell as a distribution partner for the business and government aviation markets.
Ku-band satellite Gogo has satellite agreements in place with SES (for coverage over the U.S., Atlantic Ocean and Europe) and Intelsat (for coverage over portions of the Atlantic and northern Pacific oceans, as well as routes over South America, Asia, Africa and Australia). Gogo has also signed an agreement with Intelsat for Ku band satellite capacity specifically for coverage in the Atlantic and northern Pacific oceans, as well as routes over Central and South America, Asia, Australia and parts of Africa. Gogo announced in May 2012, that it will partner with satellite equipment provider, AeroSat, to bring a Ku-satellite solution to commercial airlines. A Ku-satellite solution will allow Gogo to offer airlines connectivity services that extend beyond the United States, including transoceanic routes, and will serve the needs of some of their airline partners in the near-term until Inmarsat's Global Xpress Ka band-satellite becomes available.
Gogo Ground to Orbit Gogo's newest service is a proprietary hybrid technology that combines the best aspects of existing satellite technologies with Gogo's Air to Ground network. This technology uses satellite for receive only and Gogo's Air to Ground network for the return link to the ground. Gogo GTO offers peak speeds of 60 Mbit/s or more to aircraft flying throughout North America and will be available in 2014. This new service is expected to increase speeds by more than six times the current performance.Virgin America will be the launch partner of the new service.
Technology for business aviation For the Business/corporate aviation market, Aircell, a Gogo company, offers three different inflight technologies: Iridium Satellite, Inmarsat SwiftBroadband (satellite) and Gogo Biz (ATG and ATG-4).
Gogo platform Gogo's in-air platform brings a fully customizable experience to passengers flying. The platform gives travelers information, services, and entertainment while the airlines are able to display airline specific information.
Gogo Vision Gogo Vision enables customers to wirelessly stream content such as movies and TV shows from an onboard server to Wi-Fi enabled laptops during flight. Gogo Vision features a growing list of movies and TV shows from major Hollywood studios to offer customers entertainment choices. Movies and TV shows remain accessible for viewing after the customer has landed for 24 hours.
Gogo Text and Talk Gogo Text and Talk lets flyers send and receive text messages using their own smartphones, numbers and contact lists.
Currently, Gogo can be found on American Airlines, Air Canada, AirTran Airways, Alaska Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Frontier Airlines, United Airlines, US Airways and Virgin America. In-flight entertainment partners include American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Scoot, and US Airways.
Gogo service began on American Airlines in July 2008. The first routes served were JFK to San Francisco, JFK to LAX, and JFK to Miami. They are currently expanding to include Gogo service on the full American Airlines domestic fleet.
On August 5, 2008, Delta Air Lines announced it would install Gogo on all its domestic aircraft, which has since been completed. Recently, Delta announced that Gogo service would be expanded to include its full fleet of Delta regional jets. but a 2009 merger with Northwest Airlines added to the fleet. By early April 2010, 437 of 540 aircraft in the combined domestic fleet offered Wi-Fi, with remaining installations expected by summer 2010.
On November 20, 2009 Gogo announced that Air Canada began trials of the Gogo system on select Toronto-Los Angeles and Montreal-Los Angeles flights which occur in large part over the continental US.
On June 8, 2012, Gogo announced that Delta Air Lines will begin offering in-flight Internet service on its long-haul international fleet of more than 150 aircraft, which includes Boeing 777,767,747, Airbus 330 and transoceanic Boeing 757 aircraft in early 2013.
On August 28, 2012, Gogo announced that Industry Canada has issued Gogo a subordinate license for Canada's ATG radio frequency spectrum that will allow Gogo to serve passengers on commercial and business aircraft flying over Canada.
On January 11, 2013, Gogo announced that it will install two in-flight connectivity solutions to American Airlines' new Airbus A320 family and Boeing 737 deliveries: Ku-band satellite and Gogo's next generation Air to Ground technology - ATG-4.
On November 8, 2013 Gogo announced Gogo Text & Talk, an app that provides in-flight cell phone calls, and text messaging. The product is to be officially launched on commercial jets in 2014.
In April 2014, it was revealed through a Federal Communications Commission letter that Gogo partnered with government officials to voluntarily develop capabilities to share user data with law enforcement beyond what is required under the federal Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act.
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