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Qantas Commences Inflight Connectivity Trial Across the Pacific
Mar 07, 2012 (06:03 PM EST)

NEW YORK, March 7, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Qantas Airways has officially commenced its in-flight A380 connectivity trial today, offering passengers traveling between the United States and Australia access to the Internet and emails in the sky.

The trial will commence aboard six Qantas A380s equipped with Internet technology for flights between Los Angeles and Sydney and Los Angeles and Melbourne.

Qantas Executive Manager Customer Experience, Alison Webster, said customers will be able to access the Internet via their Wi-Fi enabled laptops and personal electronic devices, such as iPhones, iPads and BlackBerrys on Qantas for the first time.

"The eight-week trial will give customers the opportunity to access the Internet in exactly the same way as a terrestrial Wi-Fi hotspot in which customers can pay with their credit card and surf the Internet, including the use of email," Webster said.

"Qantas is the first airline in the world to trial this service on direct flights between the United States and Australia. During the past week Qantas has conducted some preliminary testing and is pleased to now trial the service with customers flying between Los Angeles and Australia."

The connectivity service, provided by OnAir uses Inmarsat's SwiftBroadband and global satellite based connections to transfer data between the passengers in the aircraft to the ground.

The trial will initially be available to customers traveling in the First and Business cabins and will form part of Qantas' ongoing strategic evaluation of connectivity options, including the review of next generation technology platforms.

Following the trial period, Qantas will assess opportunities for the long-term application of Internet capabilities across its A380 fleet.

About Qantas Airways

Qantas is the only airline offering A380 service from the U.S. on select non-stop flights from Los Angeles to Sydney and to Melbourne. The Qantas A380 features aircraft interiors designed by internationally renowned industrial designer and Qantas Creative Director Marc Newson. Providing over 40 flights per week from the U.S., Qantas offers 34 nonstop flights from Los Angeles (to Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Auckland), six from Dallas/Fort Worth to Sydney, a daily direct service from JFK and three from Honolulu to Sydney.

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