21Net Heads West in Canadian Deal

(15 Jan 2009, BWCS Staff)

European WiFi on trains supplier 21Net has spread its wings and added Canada to its areas of operations. The satellite-to-train specialist has taken control of the WiFi on-board services offered on VIA Rail trains running between Windsor, Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal, and Quebec City. The move follows an agreement between 21Net and Parsons, which previously operated the Canadian service.

21Net, which has been in business since 2004, has been working with European train companies, Renfe, SNCF and Thalys International and the European Space Agency delivering broadband internet services to trains via bi-directional satellite links. According to Henry Hyde-Thomson, Chairman of 21Net, commenting on the North American expansion, "We are extremely proud to have been selected by VIA Rail and Parsons to take over the Internet operations and propose expansions of the services to both VIA Rail and its passengers, thus contributing to VIA's commitment to quality services towards its customers."

21Net currently delivers broadband Internet across the Thalys fleet running between Amsterdam, Brussels, Cologne, and Paris in collaboration with Nokia Siemens Networks and Telenet.  Since its commercial launch in May 2008, the service, known as ThalysNet, has seen more than 60,000 passengers log on, often at speeds of up to 300kmph. The 21Net solution has also been deployed on board mooviTER, SNCF's intercity train.

21Net will be one of many companies from around the world joining BWCS to discuss the developments and changes in this dynamic market for WiFi on-board services in June, for more information please contact


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