6 JANUARY 2014
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British Airways has confirmed it is to run a connectivity trial on one of its Boeing 747 aircraft over the course of 2014.
The aircraft will be fitted with the Panasonic Global Communications Suite "providing a range of entertainment to customers' personal electronic devices under the name High Life Connect".
The B747-400 will operate on a range of different routes "testing how the system performs and identify usage levels to and from a range of destinations".
Potentially the new service will enable travellers to watch live television broadcasts from BBC World, CNN, Euro News and Sport 24, as well as stream a selection of movies and TV shows to their personal devices. This is in addition to the usual in-flight entertainment provided.
The trial will involve offering the service at different price points, to see how responsive travellers are, and initially will not be announced to the whole aircraft, but to selected passengers. No details yet on pricing but this could be timed or buying a flight pass valid for 24 hours.
Customers will be able to receive data and texts over their mobile phones, a feature already available on the London City – JFK New York service. As with US airlines voice calls is not something BA is considering. www.ba.com
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