Qantas passengers will be able to access extensive in-flight entertainment content later this year, as the carrier rolls out fast Wi-Fi on its domestic aircraft.
Under the new domestic IFE programme, passengers will be able to watch movies and TV shows on Netflix, choose music from Spotify and access live sports, news and TV content on Foxtel, using Wi-Fi that operates approximately 10 times faster than conventional in-flight internet services.
The first IFE-equipped aircraft will launch in late February, with the rest of the airline’s fleet of domestic Boeing 737 and Airbus A330 aircraft due to follow from mid-2017 onwards.
“We know that email, online shopping and general web browsing will be popular uses when we switch on Wi-Fi, but what a lot of people relish about flying is being able to catch up on their favourite TV shows or watch movies they didn’t get to see at the cinema,” said Olivia Wirth, Qantas’ group executive of brand, marketing & corporate affairs.
“Foxtel and Netflix both have huge catalogues that are expanding all the time, so there will be no shortage of entertainment onboard.
“The usage data from the collection of albums we already have on our aircraft shows that music is a great way for passengers to relax as they watch the world fly by. Spotify will open this up so you can listen to virtually any song you like,” she added.
While Foxtel, Netflix and Spotify are all paid subscription services, Qantas passengers will be offered free access both on and off the aircraft for between three days and one month after their flight. Netflix will offer its entire catalogue free-of-charge as part of a 30-day free trial, while Spotify will also offer 30-day free trials of its premium music service. Foxtel meanwhile, will offer three days’ free access to its app.
Passengers will be able to access the IFE services on their own electronic devices, including laptops, tablets and smartphones.