Dallas, Texas – In a major boon to area business
travelers, Southwest Airlines announced on Friday that it is set to begin
rolling out its new onboard wireless Internet (Wi-Fi) service this spring, with
the carrier’s full fleet of 540 plans expected to be outfitted by early 2012.
"We ended the equipment ‘testing’ phase and signed an equipment purchase
contract with our Wi-Fi provider, Row 44. That means we now begin the process
of getting equipment ordered and aircraft scheduling in place to begin our full
fleet installation," Southwest said in a blog post.
The company plans
to install equipment on 15 planes a month initially, with the goal of
increasing that number to around 25.
No price for the access has been
announced, with Southwest saying that it is testing a variety of price points.
Wi-Fi is now being offered by several carriers, including Air Canada, AirTran, American, Continental, Delta, United, US
Airways and Virgin America.