Qantas has today switched on inflight Wi-Fi on board their Boeing 737, giving travellers fast and free internet connectivity whilst they’re in the sky.
Following months of performance testing with global broadband services, the airline today rolled out the game-changing network in beta mode on the one jet, with a further 80 Airbus 330s and Boeing 737s expected to be fitted with the WiFi by the end of 2018.
The airline says the system offers speeds up to 10 times faster than conventional on-board Wi-Fi, giving customers the ability to stream movies, TV shows and music.
“Inflight Wi-Fi has been on our wish list for quite a while, but the sheer size of Australia meant it was hard to offer a service that was fast and reliable,” Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said.
“The technology we’re using on-board this 737 is a generation ahead of what most airlines around the world have and there’s a fair amount of complexity involved. That’s why we’ve installed it on one aircraft for the first few months until we’ve finished fine tuning and are ready to roll out to the rest of the domestic fleet.
“On flights between Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane, where we have a lot of business travellers, we expect the system to get a real work out with email and web browsing,” Mr Joyce added.
“We also know customers want down time, which is why we’ve partnered with streaming services like Foxtel, Stan, Netflix and Spotify so there’s no shortage of things to help people tune out.”
The Wi-Fi hardware, installed by Qantas engineers in Brisbane, includes a satellite antenna mounted on top of the aircraft, as well as multiple wireless access points, which means that all customers will have similar signal strength, regardless of where they are sitting on the plane.