We use cookies to provide you with a better experience. If you continue to use this site, we'll assume you're happy with this. Alternatively, click here to find out how to manage these cookies

hide cookie message
80,259 News Articles

Boingo's Wi-Fi access takes flight

Company will offer in-flight Internet access to its hot spot customers

Airliners are slowly coming closer to being just another place to tune in to a Wi-Fi signal.

Boingo Wireless announced a deal this week that will give its hot spot customers internet access on flights that offer the Connexion by Boeing in-flight Wi-Fi service. The partnership will remove the need for airline passengers to sign up for a separate Wi-Fi service and get a bill from Connexion by Boeing.

Connexion by Boeing, a division of Boeing, offers in-flight Wi-Fi on a number of flights by major international carriers, including Lufthansa, Scandinavian Airlines, Japan Airlines, All Nippon Airways, and SIA Group's Singapore Airlines. The company charges passengers $29.99 for access to the network on each long-haul flight.

Boingo offers users access to a network of Wi-Fi hotspots through customised client software. Customers pay a flat $21.95 (£11.48) per month fee for access to hot spots provided by many different service providers. Some networks, including the in-flight hotspots, are "premium locations" for which there is an extra charge.

Fliers with a Boingo account will get a $28.99 (£15.64) charge per flight on their regular monthly Boingo bill. The service is available immediately.

By eliminating the need for a separate account with Connexion by Boeing, Boingo overcomes one hurdle to adoption of in-flight Wi-Fi but doesn't address the biggest barriers, says Forrester Research analyst Charles Golvin.

The biggest issue now is lack of availability: For in-flight Wi-Fi to really catch on, finding it available will have to become the rule rather than the exception when users get on a flight, he says. Providers will also have to make fliers aware of it in many places, including the airline check-in gate and ticket-selling sites such as Expedia, he adds.

Price, though not an issue for very early adopters, will become an issue when providers want general passengers to log in, Golvin predicts.


IDG UK Sites

Nexus 6 vs Sony Xperia Z3 comparison: Lollipop phablet takes on KitKat flagship smartphone

IDG UK Sites

Why people aren't upgrading to iOS 8: new features are for power users, not the average Joe

IDG UK Sites

Free rocket & space sounds: NASA launches archive of interstellar audio on SoundCloud

IDG UK Sites

iPad Air 2 review: Insanely fast and alarmingly thin. Speed tests, camera tests, beautiful...