Throughout a press conference at NBAA-BACE 2019, Bombardier announced it has chosen GE as a service partner to deliver cockpit and cabin connectivity solutions to owners and operators of Bombardier Global and Challenger aircraft

GE will power Bombardier’s cockpit and cabin connectivity solutions – including new, curated service packages that will order the selection of cockpit and cabin services.

Bombardier said the deal is an initial step toward its Smart Link Plus connected aircraft program, scheduled to launch in the second half of 2020. By providing fleet-wide data, Smart Link Plus will assist customers to get educated operational and maintenance decisions.

In addition, Bombardier announced that GE’s Smark Link Plus box – a health monitoring unit that generates key data that is sent back to Bombardier and can help improve operational efficiency and reduce downtime – will be given free of charge with every new Challenger and Global business jet sold as well as a retrofit option to those already in service.

“I’m pleased to say that today, the Global 7500s we are delivering come equipped with that type of technology already,” declared Gallagher. “By offering it free of charge as a retrofit to the entire Challenger and Global fleet of aircraft, we will leverage the power of having a fully connected fleet and can provide insights to individual operators.”

He said that while GE has done this in commercial aviation, it has been harder to do it for business aviation due to smaller fleet sizes.

“This is where Bombardier decided to step in and bring big data to business aviation. Our focus groups over the last two years with customers tell us that customers trust Bombardier to be the custodian of their data.”

Andrew Coleman, senior VP, Digital Solutions at GE Aviation, said all handled data will be owned by customers and protected by seven layers of security.