Southwest Airlines begins in-flight testing of Internet service

Do you want to enjoy fast internet access while onboard? Southwest Airlines Co. said on Tuesday it has begun in-flight testing of a Wi-Fi service to let passengers surf the web.

Southwest began testing the technology on one aircraft Tuesday and plans testing on three more airplanes by early next month, the Dallas-based carrier said in a statement.

During the test period, passengers will be able to log on free using their own Wi-Fi enabled device such as laptops, iPhones and Wi-Fi enabled smart phones. But cellular technology will not work.

Southwest said it is teaming with Yahoo to offer an in-flight homepage that includes a one-of-a-kind flight tracker, as well as daily programming of local news and information.

“Internet connectivity has been high on our list of priorities for quite some time,” said Dave Ridley, Southwest Airlines Senior Vice President of Marketing and Revenue Management.

“We believe the aircraft-to-satellite technology is the most robust solution in the industry, and we look forward to the feedback from our customers,” he said.

Southwest, the United States’ largest carrier in terms of domestic passengers, currently serves 64 cities in 32 states, and operates more than 3,200 flights a day.

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