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Google Again Gives Away Free Wi-Fi For Holidays
Though is Gogo & Google getting users too used to free Wi-Fi?
by Karl Bode 03:16PM Monday Nov 08 2010
As they did last year, Google is teaming up with several airlines to give away free Wi-Fi during the holiday season. According to a Google blog post, Google Chrome has teamed up with AirTran Airways, Delta, and Virgin America to offer free Gogo Inflight Wi-Fi on every domestic flight from November 20, 2010 through January 2, 2011. Traditionally, Aircell's Gogo charges flyers $7.95 for smart phone access on flights of any length, $4.95 for flights 1.5 hours or less, $9.95 for flights between 1.5 and 3 hours, $12.95 on flights of more than three hours, or a $34.95 monthly auto-renewing unlimited access plan. In flight broadband operators have struggled to get consumers to pay for in-flight service, in large part because consumers are getting used to paying nothing for Wi-Fi.

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FFH5
Premium
join:2002-03-03
Tavistock NJ
kudos:5

Nice deal for Gogo

This is a nice gift from Google to Gogo. Gogo can't get anybody to pay for their service, so having Google buy a nice big discounted chunk of access keeps Gogo in business for awhile. And I bet that Google gets a nice big ad on the sign on page for their philanthropy.

ahulett
Premium,VIP
join:2003-02-02
Kirkland, WA
kudos:2

Re: Nice deal for Gogo

Umm, I use it every time I'm on a plane equipped with it, to the point I have the monthly plan. This actually devalues my subscription somewhat given I fly Delta primarily, unless I get something like packet priority over the freebies, but then we'll get into net neutrality stuff...
dfxmatt

join:2007-08-21
Evanston, IL

Re: Nice deal for Gogo

you're putting price and value together. they aren't ever necessarily together.

the value goes up if it's free, because guess what, you don't have to pay for it either. Given that it's December, couldn't you cancel for a month (since it isn't december yet) and restart in January to save money?

ahulett
Premium,VIP
join:2003-02-02
Kirkland, WA
kudos:2

Re: Nice deal for Gogo

Yes I can, but I'm also on Alaska Airlines here and there which is not part of this promo, although I could in theory not route myself on AS during this window.
--
Aaron Hulett | Microsoft Malware Protection Center
This post is provided "AS IS" without warranty, and confers no rights.
hottboiinnc4
ME

join:2003-10-15
Cleveland, OH

GoGo

GoGo prices are cheaper if you order ahead of time on their website BEFORE you board or even get near the plane. You can also search the 'net for coupon code and get the service even less and ther plans that you can buy while on the plane.

Duramax08
To The Moon
Premium
join:2008-08-03
San Antonio, TX

wewt

free wifi's when i travel next month. Wonder if they gona see what websites people goes to. Most of the time "free" has some kind of catch.
hottboiinnc4
ME

join:2003-10-15
Cleveland, OH

Re: wewt

of course and be required to use Google Chrome. they'll get a pop-up that says you can't use FireFox or anything else. That way google gets to double dip on what you're doing.
mdrejhon

join:2004-02-02
Toronto, ON

4 edits

Re: wewt

I used GoGo and there was no port blocking. I was able to SSH, VPN, Remote Desktop, AJAX, FireFox, IE, Chrome, SMTP, POP, my way through the Internet quickly from Virgin America on my YYZ-LAX roundtrip. Definitely paid for it.

Although GoGo can't get many people to pay for it, even the 10% of passengers that use it, still appears to mean enough revenues to keep the service sustainable (unlike Boeing Connexion.) when subsidized by the airline that's interested in keeping it to attract customers, because the system is vastly cheaper than Connexion. It uses cheaper ground infrastructure that recycles good-old-fashioned cellular CDMA EVDO technology with upwards-pointing cellular antennas.

I was impressed at the speed, considering the technical limitations of getting lots of bandwidth to a plane. If you're familiar with a high-quality midrange 3G tether (>1Mbps speedtest) in non-congested areas, the experience felt exactly the same. No ports were blocked, not even Skype (though I covertly tested it for only 5 seconds), even though official carrier policy is no conversations involving audio and/or video camera. The EVDO tended to be uncongested, and far, far, far faster than New York 3G (cue in AT&T complaining iPhone users). There were slow moments, but those didn't last for more than a few minutes -- even still felt faster than satellite.

ArrayList
DevOps
Premium
join:2005-03-19
Brighton, MA
easy solution, tunnel a vpn over port 80 and they don't get anything.
hottboiinnc4
ME

join:2003-10-15
Cleveland, OH

Re: wewt

they can if Chrome "phones" home at anytime after you disconnected. It's easy to issue an update that sends back data for "improvement". And Google is the company that would do that without asking first then claiming its their right and they have to for their business model.

ArrayList
DevOps
Premium
join:2005-03-19
Brighton, MA

Re: wewt

if it is their equipment then there isn't much you can do other than not use it.

in flight wifi is a privledge, not a right.
hottboiinnc4
ME

join:2003-10-15
Cleveland, OH

Re: wewt

nobody said it was a right now did they?

ArrayList
DevOps
Premium
join:2005-03-19
Brighton, MA
Reviews:
·RCN CABLE
·Comcast

Re: wewt

said by hottboiinnc4:

nobody said it was a right now did they?
true.

i'm still confused. what was your point?
hottboiinnc4
ME

join:2003-10-15
Cleveland, OH

Re: wewt

go re-read.

ArrayList
DevOps
Premium
join:2005-03-19
Brighton, MA

Re: wewt

you assumed that gogo would require end users to use chrome. nice assumption. it won't happen.
AndyDufresne
Premium
join:2010-10-30
Chanhassen, MN

it will be included in your ticket soon enough

Even if you use it or not.

That is how airlines roll!
whiteyonenh

join:2004-08-09
Keene, NH

Re: it will be included in your ticket soon enough

said by AndyDufresne:

Even if you use it or not.

That is how airlines roll!
And then it'll be a fee that you'll be required to pay, whether you use it or not. Something like the baggage fees, so that they don't have to show it in the base price.

Edit: I see a $30 on-plane services fee, payable at boarding time, this fee will include reclining seats, bathroom usage, and wifi, and will be required and not optional.
OwlSaver
OwlSaver
Premium
join:2005-01-30
Berwyn, PA
I think the airlines are going the other way. It used to be that tickets included meals, luggage, and choice of seat. Now, all of those are add on charges. I am waiting for them to charge for use of the bathroom.

RARPSL

join:1999-12-08
Suffern, NY

Only on the Planes?

Is this offer only good on the planes or is it also applicable at the boarding gates while you wait to board? I plan to fly later this month but only 1 of the 3 airports I will be using has free WiFi at the gates. The other 2 you must pay for so they are not of much use when I wait for my initial or connecting flights. Using the computer on the plane is not viable due to lack of room for the computer (unless you are in 1st Class or have an empty seat next to you.
whiteyonenh

join:2004-08-09
Keene, NH

Re: Only on the Planes?

said by RARPSL:

Is this offer only good on the planes or is it also applicable at the boarding gates while you wait to board? I plan to fly later this month but only 1 of the 3 airports I will be using has free WiFi at the gates. The other 2 you must pay for so they are not of much use when I wait for my initial or connecting flights. Using the computer on the plane is not viable due to lack of room for the computer (unless you are in 1st Class or have an empty seat next to you.
Any reason tethering isn't an option? I know that with most cellular carriers you can add tethering for the day or so you use it, and then remove it, and they'll charge a prorated amount, I can't see a reason for pay wifi unless you use it alot, but for these situations, tethering on 3G is quite usable. Of course, with some phones, you may be able to hack it into the phone, or otherwise get tethering for free under the radar so to speak. Both are worth checking into depending on how much risk/time you want to put into researching it.

RARPSL

join:1999-12-08
Suffern, NY

Re: Only on the Planes?

said by whiteyonenh:

said by RARPSL:

Is this offer only good on the planes or is it also applicable at the boarding gates while you wait to board? I plan to fly later this month but only 1 of the 3 airports I will be using has free WiFi at the gates. The other 2 you must pay for so they are not of much use when I wait for my initial or connecting flights. Using the computer on the plane is not viable due to lack of room for the computer (unless you are in 1st Class or have an empty seat next to you.
Any reason tethering isn't an option?
I do not have 3G support on my Phone nor a 3G dongle (or account) for my computer. My computer is used either with WiFi or plugged into a ethernet cable connected to a Cable/FIOS modem.

ahulett
Premium,VIP
join:2003-02-02
Kirkland, WA
kudos:2
Only on planes, and only while over 10,000 feet.

RARPSL

join:1999-12-08
Suffern, NY

Re: Only on the Planes?

said by ahulett:

Only on planes, and only while over 10,000 feet.
Thanks. I asked since I have the impression that I can get GoGo at the terminal and since this is in a dedicated terminal there is no issue about what airline I am using.

espaeth
Digital Plumber
Premium,MVM
join:2001-04-21
Minneapolis, MN
kudos:2

Re: Only on the Planes?

said by RARPSL:

Thanks. I asked since I have the impression that I can get GoGo at the terminal and since this is in a dedicated terminal there is no issue about what airline I am using.
The access points on the planes are technically on all the time, so if you're sitting at the gate you can actually see the gogo/aircell SSIDs sometimes.

The Gogo system is basically cell towers that are pointed at the sky, so the planes need to be in the air to get a signal at all, and the systems are tied in to an altimeter to automatically enable and disable the plane to ground interface at 10,000 ft.
hottboiinnc4
ME

join:2003-10-15
Cleveland, OH

Re: Only on the Planes?

yep! it is a cell network actually. It runs EVDO.

But you can order the service before boarding and you'll save $$$ but you have to order on another network; such as the airport's and NOT GoGo.

RARPSL

join:1999-12-08
Suffern, NY
said by espaeth:

said by RARPSL:

Thanks. I asked since I have the impression that I can get GoGo at the terminal and since this is in a dedicated terminal there is no issue about what airline I am using.
The access points on the planes are technically on all the time, so if you're sitting at the gate you can actually see the gogo/aircell SSIDs sometimes.

That was not what I was talking about. When I am sitting at an airport and connect to the airport's WiFi, I am offered a list of companies who I can be billed by for use of the WiFi connection (or whose account I can use my LogOn credentials for). It was my impression that one of them was GoGo. If I had a monthly GoGo account, I could log on there or buy a one-day account that would allow me to connect on multiple flights. As I said, I could be wrong (I will find out later this month when I make my trip).

espaeth
Digital Plumber
Premium,MVM
join:2001-04-21
Minneapolis, MN
kudos:2

Re: Only on the Planes?

said by RARPSL:

It was my impression that one of them was GoGo.
I'm 99% certain you're thinking of Boingo.

Gogo is in-air Internet service only.
hottboiinnc4
ME

join:2003-10-15
Cleveland, OH

Re: Only on the Planes?

Yes but some airports have agreements that they offer more than one WiFi connection for the customers. They just configure it in the Router and broadcast that SSID too. Some airports only offer 1 provider as well.

antdude
A Matrix Ant
Premium,VIP
join:2001-03-25
United State
kudos:5

How are the pings, speeds, and uptimes?

Is it better than DirectPC? Can we play WoW and other real-time games online? What about downloading big files and watching streaming videos?
hottboiinnc4
ME

join:2003-10-15
Cleveland, OH

Re: How are the pings, speeds, and uptimes?

just an EVO Rev. A service.

antdude
A Matrix Ant
Premium,VIP
join:2001-03-25
United State
kudos:5
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable

Re: How are the pings, speeds, and uptimes?

said by hottboiinnc4:

just an EVO Rev. A service.
Oh. So, not great? I am not familiar with that one.
hottboiinnc4
ME

join:2003-10-15
Cleveland, OH

Re: How are the pings, speeds, and uptimes?

i meant to say EVDO. Rev. A
Mark Rejhon

join:2004-02-02
Ottawa, ON
Night and day. It's much better than satellite in my experience.

Youtube 360p streamed acceptably on my GoGo connection, though halfway I sometimes had to wait a few seconds for buffering. Occasionally, it would go dog slow and stall, then download faster than it played.

Pings are about 150ms approximately. It's decent enough for any games that work fine over a Sprint/Rogers/TMobile/Bell/Verizon 3G tether connection (and MUCH faster than overloaded New York City 3G / San Francisco 3G)

I heard that you can play World of Warcraft just fine on Gogo Internet. But fast-twitch 3D shooter competitions will put you at a disadvantage.

•••