Virgin America offers entertainment content via Gogo portal

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Virgin America has started granting complementary access to celebrity news site People.com via its Aircell Gogo in-flight Internet service, as part of a trial that represents the first-ever entertainment content offered on the Gogo portal by the airline.

Known for its Red in-flight entertainment platform, Virgin America became the first airline to offer Gogo on every flight in May of 2009. "Beyond providing in-flight internet access, we're striving to provide relevant, real time, engaging content to our users," says Dave Bijur, Vice president of partnerships. "That's why we are thrilled to provide passengers with People.com's leading entertainment news content, and we hope to expand the trial in 2011."

Whitelisting allows Aircell to explicitly define which URLs its portal can access for free, creating a sort of walled garden experience for passengers who do not want to pay for unfettered access to the Gogo in-flight Wi-fi service.

In addition to its work with Virgin America on People.com, Aircell recently partnered with GroundLink to enable passengers to book ground transportation while in-flight without paying for a session of Aircell's Gogo.

Under the so-called 'Wi-fi and Drive' package, passengers do not need to purchase a Gogo session to access the LimoRes.com site to take advantage of the offer. Once a vehicle is booked, customers instantly receive a code for their free Gogo in-flight Internet session, which can be used immediately or on a future Gogo-enabled flight.

Wi-fi and Drive is available on all aircraft equipped with Gogo,