In the near future, passengers on flights using Boeing jumbo jets will remain connected with the rest of the world below.
The U.S.-based aircraft manufacturer said on Thursday that future roll out of its assembled planes will be designed to accommodate cellular connectivity, wireless broadband and live television feeds.
"We're always working to ensure that our products offer the airlines of the world the most modern and robust technologies available to provide their passengers with an exceptional flying experience," the company said in a statement issued in Seattle.
Boeing planes likely to first offer these features, according to Boeing senior chief engineer Mike Sinnett, are the Dreamliner 787 and the 747-8, both aircraft that have been designed for long-haul flights.
The plane models will be deployed with post-delivery retrofit of systems that will allow airlines to offer Wi-Fi connectivity and cellular services to their customers," Mr Sinnett said.
"Passengers want the option of staying connected to e-mail and the internet and other online offerings when flying," the Boeing head for Aeroplane Systems was quoted by News Ltd as saying in the statement.
He added that the Boeing premium services will likely be in place by 2013, specifically for the 787 and the 747-8.
In turn, TV viewing through wireless streaming media will debut by the following year as Mr Sinnett disclosed that "we've looked across the industry and are partnering with several connectivity system providers across our family of aeroplanes."
The likelihood that Boeing 737s will be included in the connectivity program remains a valid option as the company noted that the model has the existing architecture for the inclusion of the communication system in the future.
It is unlikely though that national carrier Qantas Airways would soon allow mobile phones usage on its flight following a trial run five years ago that resulted to passengers overwhelmingly rejecting the idea of a plane cabin filled with chatter.
But Internet connectivity is another thing, the company said.
"While our customer research shows passengers are keen on connectivity such as the internet, they're not so keen to be sitting next to someone nattering on their phone on a long-haul flight," Qantas was reported by The Herald Sun as saying on Friday.
Similar in-flight mobile phone services were also tried by other airlines but were immediately discontinued after floods of negative reactions from air travellers.
Also, Yahoo blog site YTech said in a post on Friday that aviation regulators and governments will likely scrutinise the services prior to full implementation in order to determine their operational and safety implications.
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