PARIS -- Saudi Arabia's Taqnia Space has signed a multi-year contract with France's Eutelsat that will allow the Middle Eastern communications group to improve and expand its in-flight connectivity services.
The deal gives Taqnia incremental multi-transponder wide-beam capacity on the Eutelsat 70B, in addition to all five high throughput satellite spotbeams on the Eutelsat 3B.
"This agreement marks a new milestone in our relationship with Taqnia Space," said Eutelsat CEO Rodolphe Belmer. "It highlights the capacity of our satellite fleet to meet the growing needs of the largest operators in the field of in-flight connectivity, and to support the rise of the new norm: being connected everywhere and at all times."
The increased capacity will allow Taqnia to provide better coverage of the Middle East, northern Africa and Europe, and provide for the first time in-flight connectivity services of central and southeastern Asia.
"By extending the contract with Eutelsat on Eutelsat 3B and adding new capacity over a wider area through leased resources on Eutelsat 70B, we are certain that we can deliver a high-quality response to the exponential requirements of the airlines we partner with and ensure continuous global connectivity service," said Abdullah Al-Osaimi, CEO of Taqnia Space.
Chief amongst the beneficiaries of Taqnia's deal is Saudi Arabian Airlines, which expects to launch its global connectivity package, "UON", by the end of the year.
The carrier recently named Taqnia as its exclusive provider of in-flight broadband internet, telephone and television services.