Qantas announced today that they will be fitting their Airbus A380 aircraft with the OnAir SwiftBroadband connectivity suite, providing in-flight internet connectivity on trans-Pacific flights between Australia and the United States. The move brings WiFi connectivity to the fleet type but not GSM/GPRS mobile services so there will not be the option for in-flight voice or SMS/text services. The service trial is expected to start in February.
This is a similar system to that which Emirates will be using on their A380 fleet as announced earlier this week. It will also allow Qantas to remain competitive with United Airlines, which has announced intentions to outfit its entire fleet with WiFi, including the 747s they are flying to Australia.
No word on pricing yet, and the trial in February is for "business and first class passengers" according to one report, though I don’t know how they’ll keep the WiFi signal only on the upper deck. More details as they come out.
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