LiveTV will feature 36 channels supplied by DirecTV on every seatback monitor. The access will be free for all first class passengers while the coach charge will be $6. In addition, there will be free WiFi throughout the aircraft, available free of charge that allows smartphones, laptops, and Blackberries to instant message, check e-mail, and browse.
The announcement comes as little surprise as there have been hints of such a move for a while. LiveTV does not interest me that much as I usually read or work while in the air, but for those who need to know what CNN is doing at all hours, this is perfect. I’m sure the television will be a big hit with the infrequent traveler but may strike a nerve with those are on the road a lot and see the airplane as somewhat of a relaxation area between clients.
The WiFi is more of a mixed bag. I love the idea of being able to send and receive e-mail while flying but at the same time, it comes back to being separated from the hustle and bustle for a while. After being in meetings all week with clients, business travelers just want to get home, not e-mailing back and forth with the just visited client.