On October 30th, 2019, Air France tested the very first flight equipped with Li-Fi (Light Fidelity) technology developed by Latécoère on board the commercial flight AF6114 operated by Airbus A321 from Paris-Orly to Toulouse. As part of its commitment to researching new in-flight uses for its customers, Air France welcomed gamers, finalists in the “Air France Trackmania Cup”, developed by Ubisoft, who competed in the sky.
Air France and Latécoère are currently testing the ease with which this technology can be integrated and certified on commercial flights.
“This first flight equipped with our LiFi technology is an important step in the roll-out of this technology in the aeronautical market. We are convinced that LiFi will revolutionize in-flight connectivity within the next 5 years. I am particularly pleased with the work carried out in collaboration with the Air France Industries KLM Engineering & Maintenance teams, who carried out the certification work on the solution and its integration into the cabin in record time.” – Yannick Assouad, CEO of Latécoère
Two days earlier, Latécoère announced the industrial scale-up of its LiFi technology, thanks to two strategic partnerships with Signify, the world leader in lighting, on its Trulifi technology, and with South Korea’s aerospace and defence specialist, Huneed Technologies, for data communication electronics and software.
At first, Trulifi will be used for the connection of the media players in the headrests. In the next phase, LiFi will enable passengers to connect their personal devices to the onboard media and Internet, but also interact with each other and have the same connectivity experience on board as on the ground.
“The Paris Air Show 2019 gave Latécoère the opportunity to demonstrate the power of the LiFi speed. Our technology, which showcases our Group’s worldwide lead in innovation, raised a lot of expectation from the market and is now ready to progress to the next level,” said Yannick Assouad, CEO of Latécoère. “Partnering with two leaders in their respective sectors such as Signify and Huneed Technologies will enable new opportunities and horizons for Latécoère’s LiFi, to ensure its widespread use in airplane cabins.” – Yannick Assouad, CEO of Latécoère.
LiFi enables a superior onboard connectivity experience in terms of bandwidth, latency and stability. Another advantage of LiFi is that it doesn’t interfere with sensitive equipment and that the connection isn’t affected by the airplane’s movements. LiFi also results in less cabling, and together with an infrastructure upgrade to low-weight fiber solutions, will reduce the airplane’s weight and fuel usage.