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Aircell, a company which has pioneered the use of in-flight broadband, has made improvements to its in-flight technology.

Its Gogo service, used by American Airlines and attracting interest from carriers across the globe, has now upgraded its service with the help of partners ZTE USA and Qualcomm.

A new base station system means high-speed internet can be delivered to high altitudes better than was previously possible.

Dr George Sun, ZTE USA chief executive, commented: "By working closely with Aircell and Qualcomm, we were able to tap into the brightest [research and development] minds available to create the most cutting-edge and flexible networking platform.

"We look forward to working with Aircell and Qualcomm to scale the platform to support increasing demand and future expansion of the service."

British Airways trialled broadband in its aircraft as far back as 2002 after gaining encouraging feedback from customers who showed a demand for the service.

German airline Lufthansa was the first company to take broadband to the skies on a commercial scale in 2004.

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