May 12, 2009

AirTran to add broadband to all flights

U.S. airline AirTran Airways said Tuesday it would the first major airline to outfit its entire fleet of jets with broadband Internet service.

AirTran said it would partner with Aircell and complete its service installation by mid-summer.

The airline has a fleet of 136 jets, including Boeing 737 and 717 aircraft. Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer Bob Fornaro said in a statement the move, sets AirTran Airways apart from our competitors.

No matter which flight they are on, the airline cabin will be their mobile office, social network, online mall or whatever they want it to be, he said.

Other major airlines have begun installing Internet service, but AirTran said it would be the first to outfit its entire fleet.

In the past month, the airline said, as it explored the option of adding broadband services to flights, consumers submitted a convincing 30,000 suggestions to the airline, suggesting the service would have adequate consumer support.