Virgin Australia To Roll Out Samsung Galaxy Tabs
15th Aug 2012
The competition has intensified between Australia's two biggest airlines as Virgin Australia and Qantas take their battle to the cabin, this time in the in-flight entertainment department. Earlier, Qantas made an announcement that it will offer Apple iPads to its passengers on selected Boeing 767 aircraft. Virgin Australia is not about to be left behind as it will begin offering Samsung Galaxy tablets to all passengers on most flights.
Virgin Australia concluded its one-week trial phase in April when it offered the Android-based tablets to its business class passengers on some of its Boeing 737 as well as Embraer E190 aircraft.
According to Virgin Australia spokeswoman, the trial period was so successful that they started offering the Samsung Galaxy 10.1 this early in most of its domestic as well as short-haul regional network including flights to Tasmania.
The new in-flight service is offered free for passengers in the business class cabin as well as flights taking more than three hours and flexi-fare guests. There were no words, however, about its availability for passengers on economy class.
Up Next: Inflight Entertainment Over wifi
Blockbuster movies, favorite television shows as well as music videos will be preloaded in each unit. Later in the year, however, Virgin will begin streaming real-time digital content via wireless technology.
According to the airline official, Virgin Australia will launch the second phase of its new in-flight entertainment service, called Lufthansa Systems Wi-Fi streaming technology, before the year ends. The new service will allow passengers to stream video and audio contents straight to their own electronic gadgets as well as Galaxy Tab 10.1.
Passengers will also soon enjoy unrestricted entertainment on board when the full roster of BYO devices that they own such as iPhones and other smartphones, iPads and Android tablets, are allowed to be used. Guests will also soon be able to use their notebooks that run on either Windows or Mac.
Virgin will be using the Lufthansa BoardConnect for its second phase. The system was earlier used by Qantas during its trial on Q Streaming in-flight entertainment service offering but quashed it in favor of Panasonic's eXW system on its regular service.
Borghetti: Tablets for A330s as Well as Boeing 737s
John Borghetti, the CEO of Virgin Australia recently is hoping that the roll-out of its wi-fi service on board will start as soon as possible considering the system's installation process is quite easy. Outfitting an aircraft with the wi-fi system doesn't take very long. In fact it can be done overnight and within three nights at most, you are done with one aircraft and passengers can start using it right away.
He was confident that within 12 to 18 months, the whole fleet of Virgin Australia, from Boeing 737-800s to Airbus A320s will all be fitted with the new wi-fi system.