AIM on a Plane

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It seems like as more and more technology emerges we are becoming more and more connected and always in touch with everyone. Personally, I have this blog, a facebook, two myspace profiles, and two cell phones. On top of that I have several email addresses. While facebook originated as a college student site, I am now befriending more and more people I have met at work, or in the industry. People are constantly connected and expected to be in communication 24/7. It has become so easy to get in contact with people, and find out a bunch of information about a person before you even meet them. This radical change in communication sky rocketed within the past three years, and if things continue in this way will we ever have time to ourselves?

Being on a plane did provide an excuse to really relax and get away from everything. But I know I will be flying a lot in the future and if I am on a 20 hour flight I would definitely need to stay connected and interact with people. And of course Jet Blue is one of the first to try this out. Check out the article below to find out more about what airlines are trying to do.

Web Access and E-Mail on Flights

Robert Stolarik for The New York Times

On Tuesday, JetBlue will begin offering a free e-mail and instant messaging service on one of its aircraft. David Neeleman, the company’s founder, demonstrated the new service.

Published: December 7, 2007

Passengers may soon hear a new in-flight announcement: “You can now log on.”

Starting next week and over the next few months, several United States airlines will test Internet service on their planes.

On Tuesday, JetBlue Airways will begin offering a free e-mail and instant messaging service on one of its planes, while American Airlines, Virgin America and Alaska Airlines plan to offer broader Web access in coming months, probably at a cost around $10 a flight.

“I think 2008 is the year when we will finally start to see in-flight Internet access become available,” said Henry Harteveldt, an analyst with Forrester Research, “but I suspect the rollout domestically will take place in a very measured way.” “In a few years time,” he added, “if you get on a flight that doesn’t have Internet access, it will be like walking into a hotel room that doesn’t have TV.”

The airlines’ goal is to turn their planes into the equivalent of wireless hot spots once they reach cruising altitude. These services will not be available on takeoff or landing.

Virgin America even plans to link the technology to its seat-back entertainment system, enabling passengers who are not traveling with laptops or smart phones to send messages on a flight.

SOURCE: NY TIMES

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