UK air passengers could soon gain access to super-fast, in-flight broadband services, it has been reported.
As reported by the Daily Mail, Ofcom is consulting on whether to approve the use of a new satellite-based technology - Earth Stations on Mobile Platforms - on aeroplanes.
The solution, which could also offer connectivity on ships and trains, has the potential to deliver download speeds of up to 50Mb.
Currently, in-flight broadband services are both limited and slow - with a current Wi-Fi trial on Virgin Atlantic’s A330 carriers offering speeds of just 432Kb.
A spokesperson for the firm said the Ofcom consultation has been noted with interest, and Virgin Atlantic would welcome any developments that could potentially enhance the passenger experience.
"[We] are always looking for new and innovative ways to do this on our aircraft," the representative stated.
"If these proposals become a reality we would be interested in looking into this further."
Charles Jenne, Policy Director at Ofcom, revealed the regulator has been working with its European counterparts for the past two years to create a framework to allow the introduction of new satellite technology.
He noted that "recent innovations" mean it is now possible for planes, ships and trains to access the internet at speeds closer to what consumers would expect from their home broadband connections.
"Ofcom is proposing to allow the use of this technology in the UK," Mr Jenne stated.
He claimed the technology could benefit business users and holidaymakers who want to stay connected while travelling in the air.
"This might be updating their Facebook status, sending a work email, or checking the latest news headlines," Mr Jenne noted.