Gogo in-flight Wi-Fi now able to handle phone calls and texts in the air

Discussion in 'Travel Technology' started by sobore, Nov 8, 2013.  |  Print Topic

  1. sobore
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    sobore Gold Member

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    http://www.theverge.com/2013/11/8/5...t-lets-passengers-send-receive-calls-messages

    Gogo's in-flight Wi-Fi is starting to roll out a major new feature: the ability to send and receive text messages and phone calls while up in the air. Call and texts over Gogo's new Talk & Text service have to be made through its upcoming iOS or upcoming Android app, but Gogo says that they'll all be made using the phone's own number, so nothing will change for people who contact you. The feature isn't available on any consumer flights just yet — though it recently launched with a few business partners — but Gogo says that it's in talks to get it up and running on commercial airlines by the end of this year or the first quarter of 2014.


    Gogo's chief marketing officer, Ash ElDifrawi, says that the company expects most people to use the service for text messaging. "While we see this as more of a text messaging product for commercial airlines in the United States, the phone functionality is something that some international air carriers and our business aviation customers are asking for," ElDifrawi says in a statement. A representative explained to The Verge that its airline partners, like Delta and American Airlines, are not interested in bringing in-flight phone calls to their planes — and it's not hard to imagine why. Indeed, Gogo already blocks Skype and other such services from using its internet in the skies at the request of such airlines, and the company does not expect to launch its voice services on any domestic flights.

    Read More:http://www.theverge.com/2013/11/8/5...t-lets-passengers-send-receive-calls-messages
     
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  2. MSYgirl

    MSYgirl Gold Member

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    Thank goodness. The chatty brats who can't get off their phone until the last minute would drive me insane yapping through an entire flight. It would deter me from flying in the future.
     
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  3. zphelj

    zphelj Gold Member

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    On commercial flights SMS just makes sense, voice maybe not so much. Though it's currently easy to get around the blocks, I've rarely seen anyone doing so for voice or video, just chat which is low bandwidth.
     
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  4. Mike Reed

    Mike Reed Gold Member

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    I've done voice, accidentally, while logged into my browser (Chrome) and forgetting that that logs me into the same system Google Voice uses. My computer "rang" while I was online and I answered the call on my headset. Quality was expectedly poor and we moved the conversation to chat.
     
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  5. NYBanker
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    NYBanker Gold Member

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    I can hear the chorus of SMS chimes ringing consistently through the cabin already. :rolleyes:
     
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  6. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    Yeah I used Google Voice / Hangouts / Facebook for chats while in the air all the time... the voice business might not be the best because of the quality (plus the fact you have dozens of people within earshot), but the ability to do realtime chat while you're in transit is invaluable.
     
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