In-Flight Wi-Fi Coming to Transoceanic Flights

Gogo

Gogo PR:

Gogo, a leader of in-flight connectivity and a pioneer in wireless in-flight digital entertainment solutions, announced today that it will partner with satellite equipment provider, AeroSat, to bring a Ku-satellite solution to commercial airlines. A Ku-satellite solution will allow Gogo to offer airlines connectivity services that extend beyond the United States, including transoceanic routes, and will serve the needs of some of our airlines partnersin the near-term until Inmarsat’s Global Xpress Ka-satellite service becomes available.

Although I feel somewhat negative about in-flight calling, international wi-fi would be an endlessly welcome addition.

Virgin Atlantic Offering Mobile Calling Between London and New York

Virgin Atlantic

Adi Robertson reports for The Verge:

Virgin Atlantic Airways has announced that its new Airbus A330 planes, and later others, will let passengers make and receive cellphone calls while in the air. The company is using AeroMobile, a GSM service that’s also signed deals with Lufthansa, Cathay Pacific, and others; calls can be placed in-flight any time except during take-off and landing, and passengers are charged standard international roaming rates. This partnership makes Virgin the first UK carrier to allow voice mobile calls during flights, although competitor British Airways currently offers text service.

Upon reading The Verge’s headline for this article last week, I felt utterly optimistic. Several days later — and following a solid forty days of repeated air travel — I feel less than enthused at the prospect of exponentially increased quantities of traveler obnoxiousness.

"Fliers Still Must Turn Off Devices, but It's Not Clear Why"

Nick Bilton for The New York Times:

Surely if electronic gadgets could bring down an airplane, you can be sure that the Department of Homeland Security and the Transportation Security Administration, which has a consuming fear of 3.5 ounces of hand lotion and gel shoe inserts, wouldn’t allow passengers to board a plane with an iPad or Kindle, for fear that they would be used by terrorists.

A point of sincere frustration for airline passengers around the world.