JetBlue to offer Oasis to passengers

My colleague Megan Kuhn, proprietor of the Terminal Q blog, has just written an interesting story for Air Transport Intelligence that I want to share with you. She writes that JetBlue intends to offer subsidiary LiveTV’s “broadband-like” in-flight connectivity offering, Oasis, to passengers.

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We’ve talked about Oasis’ cached content before. But it’s nice to see JetBlue pressing ahead with this offering in conjunction with the rollout across its A320 fleet of LiveTV’s air-to-ground (ATG)-based Kiteline email and instant messaging product for Wi-Fi enabled laptops and PDAs. Equipage of JetBlue’s Embraer 190s is also in the cards but no timeline has been set.

JetBlue director of product development Brett Cochran told Megan that, as JetBlue readies for Oasis and Kiteline installation to begin on some A320s before the end of 2009, the carrier is ironing out Oasis content.

Key paragraphs:

The airline is contemplating a mix of destination and airport information along with voluntarily-viewed advertising, he says. For example, the airline worked with movie studios to enable passengers to watch stored movie trailers via BetaBlue, Cochran adds.

JetBlue also has the ability to combine Kiteline and Oasis to provide more detailed destination information. For example, the carrier could upload weather reports and traffic data using Kiteline and store other destination details on Oasis. Once installed, passengers will be able to access Kiteline and Oasis for free.

That proposition could change if JetBlue decides to eventually offer a full in-flight broadband service to passengers. JetBlue CEO Dave Barger thinks it would be appropriate for the carrier to charge for the service on long-haul flights such as transcontinental routes.

As reported this week, however, LiveTV remains on the fence about offering Ku-band-based connectivity to passengers, and is now also keeping a close eye on how the Ka-band sector shifts out.

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One Response to JetBlue to offer Oasis to passengers

  1. Wandering Aramean April 30, 2009 at 11:50 am #

    Sounds great, but jetBlue/LiveTV has been so slow in getting KiteLine out the door and onto more than just the one plane I cannot help but wonder when this will actually ever happen. I am looking forward to this as an option and competitor to Aircell in the US market, but I’ll believe it when I see it.