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Good News For Road Warriors: Wi-Fi Up High

Good news for road warriors and solution providers: United Airlines has been approved for airborne Wi-Fi on its flights, which signals a new milestone in mobile computing.

United Airlines

"Our research shows that connecting to the Internet is customers' most preferred form of communication to the ground, and this certification is a crucial step to bring this inflight wireless access to our customers," said Dennis Cary, United's senior vice president-marketing. "We are thrilled by this accomplishment and proud to lead the industry in North America with Verizon Airfone in this endeavor."

Writes Peter Rojas at Computer Alchemy:

No kidding--especially when your favorite ballclub starts a game at the same time your flight takes off from New York to San Francisco. But we digress...

Alan Reiter at the Wireless Internet Caucus writes a bit more and notes a number of hurdles that United will have to jump before the service can go live. Still, he points out that airborne Wi-Fi opens more possibilities than just e-mail and IMing at 35,000 feet:

So if you're a solution provider, the number of reasons to move your clients over to a Wi-Fi standard just increased manyfold.

This is far from widespread adoption of Wi-Fi by all major air carriers, but since the airline industry is largely a keeping-up-with-the-Joneses sector, it's only a matter of time. Next up: major metropolitan transit systems. In any event, the disconnected world continues to shrink.

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