Wireless Internet is now available on 83% of seats on U.S. airlines, up from about 74% last year, according to a study by Routehappy. (Delta Air Lines)
Although this is connectivity is great news, anyone who has tried to stream video knows that they are often blocked from doing so or the speed is so slow that it is near impossible. Don’t worry though, U.S. Carriers are making high speed Wi-Fi a priority. For example, JetBlue recently announced that it has installed free, high-speed Wi-Fi on all of its planes. The satellite-based service through Carlsbad-based ViaSat is capable of speeds of up to 20mbps per device but only works on flights in the contiguous U.S.
“It’s a really good time for travelers,” said Jeff Klee, CEO of CheapAir.com. “Airlines are really starting to compete on product.”
Southwest Airlines announced in December that it is hiring a second Wi-Fi provider to offer wireless Internet on all of its planes by the end 2017. The speeds are expected to be up to three times current speeds.
Of course, quick and easy internet access is fantastic—until the passenger next to you talks loudly for the entire flight. As inflight Wi-Fi becomes as commonplace as beverage service, cell phone manners and other flight etiquette rules still apply.
When is your next flight? Will you be selecting your flight based on availability of Wi-Fi? Google Flights, a great flight seat search aggregator, will show which flights have inflight Wi-Fi. Remember of course, not all Wi-Fi is created equally.
Nate Trimmer is a Co-Founder of Omnibeat. As a social media enthusiast with a background in organizational development and computer technology, he strives to help businesses understand and embrace social media.
Omnibeat is the digital marketing outsource solution for growth in Los Alamitos and the greater Long Beach area.