Okay, so I didn’t do the reviewing, but this blog, Need2Know Travel, did try the Row 44 in-flight Wi-Fi system being fitted to Southwest Airlines’ entire Boeing 737 fleet (some 60 aircraft are expected to be equipped by year-end).
Row 44 runs over Ku-band satellites (versus Aircell’s air-to-ground (ATG)-based Gogo). I’m highlighting this review as it is the first I’ve seen since the change-out in antennas and it contains some interesting info.
Here is what Need2Know says about the speed and price of Southwest Wi-Fi (click through to the original post for more info) :
SPEED: The speed definitely exceeded my expectations. 2.89MBS would be faster than your Internet if you had for example a QWEST 1.5MBS connection.
PRICE: I thought it was more than reasonable to charge $3.00 to use my laptop from Phoenix to Albuquerque. I also noticed that I wanted to only use the Wi-Fi for my iPhone it would have only been $1.00 an extremely reasonable price.
It is important to note that Southwest told attendees at last week’s APEX convention that it is still testing price points for in-flight Wi-Fi (wouldn’t things get very interesting if Southwest offered Wi-Fi for free, as it does for luggage)?
Separately, for the in-flight Avgeeks among us (you know who you are), Row 44 divulged some very interesting news at APEX about its plans for Ka-band-based connectivity. Read all about it in APEX’s latest WIN newsletter, which is now available to non-members!
(Photo above from Brent Payne’s Flickr photostream)