Alaska Airlines Flies Ahead With In-flight Wi-fi

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Alaska Airlines flies ahead with in-flight Wi-Fi

It joins other big airlines in committing to the wireless service

By Stephen Lawson

April 15, 2009 (IDG News Service)

U.S. airlines are piling on to the in-flight Wi-Fi bandwagon, with Alaska Airlines Inc. joining other airlines in expanding the service to more aircraft.

More than 2,100 passengers have used the service since it was offered in a free trial run on one plane beginning Feb. 26, the airline said Tuesday. Alaska Airlines will now go ahead with installing the system on more aircraft in the coming months and testing prices.

Other U.S. airlines have also forged ahead with in-flight Wi-Fi, which is re-emerging with new technology after the demise of the Connexion by Boeing service in 2006. On March 31, American Airlines Inc. said that its service had come out of the trial stage and that systems would be installed on more than 300 domestic planes over the next two years. In December, Virgin America began commercial Wi-Fi service after a brief passenger trial and committed to rolling it out on its full fleet of 28 planes.

Delta Air Lines Inc. said last year that it would have Wi-Fi on its entire fleet of 330 planes by the end of this summer. United Air Lines Inc. started offering the service on 13 aircraft in January.

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