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IN FLIGHT PHONE AND INTERNET SERVICE IN BIMAN FLIGHT SOON

Biman Bangladesh Airlines, the national flag carrier of the country, has been allowed to provide in-flight phone and on-board internet service. The approval was given by BTRC in its meeting on June.

BTRC, however, imposed five conditions while gave the approval and expected that the service will be launched from September.

The telecom operators have said it may take some time due to billing adjustment.

A top operator said that they did not get any instructions from the BTRC. They are ready to cooperate if necessary.

Posts Telecommunications and ICT Minister Mustafa Jabbar said in-flight phone and on-board internet service will be a milestone in the country. He also congratulated both the airlines and the BTRC for this.

BTRC already allocated 4 MHz spectrum of 1900 and 2100 band of 3G band for the approval of Biman Bangladesh Airlines. BTRC Chairman Zahurul Haque said the commission directed the Department of Spectrum to implement it.

The five conditions which were given to launch the service are– Biman can start the service after getting the height of 6,000 meters from the land. The surveys charge will be adjusted through billing with the local mobile operators. Terrestrial network cannot be interfered. The service must be closed during the aircraft take off and landing. Biman Bangladesh Airlines will have to give BTRC $2,000 per year to provide service during Bangladesh territory.

Biman will give 20 megabyte free data to every passenger for using in mobile phones or any other devices or monitors, said Shakil Meraj, a general manager of Biman.

He said Biman is getting delivery of four new Dreamliners and the first one will join its fleet in August. All the Dreamliner aircraft will offer inflight mobile and internet service. Biman is yet to fix the tariff to be levied on phone calls or prices for additional data consumption.

“The service will brighten the image of the national flag carrier,” said Meraj.

According to a joint presentation of Biman and Panasonic Aviation, the national carrier will set up a base station in every aircraft to ensure backhaul connectivity in order to allow passengers to use internet and make phone calls.

In 2008, Biman signed an agreement with Boeing to buy 10 brand new Boeing-787s for $2.1 billion. It has already received six.

Biman with 12 aircraft travels to 15 international and seven domestic destinations.

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