Tuesday, 05 June 2018 09:20

Virgin Australia Wi-Fi goes live

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Virgin Australia Wi-Fi goes live Virgin Australia

Virgin Australia's international inflight Wi-Fi service is out of testing and is now officially live.

Inflight Wi-Fi is now available on Virgin Australia's routes between Australia and Los Angeles.

The launch of the service on Virgin's five 777 aircraft means Virgin Australia/Delta Air Lines is the first trans-Pacific alliance to offer inflight Wi-Fi on all planes.

In addition, iInflight Wi-Fi is now available on 10 of Virgin Australia's Boeing 737 aircraft, and this is expected to increase to 75% of the fleet by the end of the year.

The airline's A330-200 aircraft will be fitted with inflight Wi-Fi in early 2019.

Virgin Australia did not say whether the service was free of would cost extra. Delta Air Lines provides free use for messaging apps such as iMessage and WhatsApp, but full access costs US$28 per day.

According to recent research conducted by Pure Profile for Virgin Australia, 70% of Australians feel frustrated because they cannot access the Internet while in flight, and more than 65% feel overwhelmed by the emails, messages and other unread notifications they need to catch up with after landing.

For some passengers, a long-haul flight is a welcome break from connectivity, but the survey found three-quarters would enjoy their flights more if they could stay connected.

Favoured uses include social media (23.8%), streaming movies or TV shows (21.3%), personal email and Web browsing (16.5%), reading news (15.6%), and instant messaging friends and family (14.6%).

"Most of us use our phones on a daily — if not hourly basis — meaning it can be incredibly disruptive to have extended periods of time when you can't connect with friends, family, colleagues, or what's going on in the world," said Virgin Australia Airlines group executive Rob Sharp.

"We’re proud to be the leader in providing Australians with greater inflight connectivity on international flights."

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Stephen Withers

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Stephen Withers is one of Australia¹s most experienced IT journalists, having begun his career in the days of 8-bit 'microcomputers'. He covers the gamut from gadgets to enterprise systems. In previous lives he has been an academic, a systems programmer, an IT support manager, and an online services manager. Stephen holds an honours degree in Management Sciences and a PhD in Industrial and Business Studies.

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