Time to update Lufthansa’s progress of bringing WIFI to its fleet. Though the service, called FlyNet (developed by Panasonic), was rolled out earlier this year on North Atlantic routes the information on fleet availability has changed.
I first had the chance to use FlyNet on flights across the Atlantic earlier this year traveling to the World Hockey Championships and was impressed with stability of connection and speed. Sitting there at 38,000ft, my Ipad-2’s WIFI connection was honestly just as fast as the WIFI in my home and never lost connection.
Honestly, I did not know about FlyNet until flipping through Lufthansa’s inflight “Magazin” and discovered that I could be surfing the internet vs. just staring out the window for 8 hours! The “Magazin” didn’t have a chance to hit the floor before my Ipad was in hand. There was something surreal about exchanging emails with my wife while over the North Atlantic. Being connected to FlyNet made the flight feel half as long as it really was since the distraction of the internet blurred everything else around me.
The Deutsche Telekom (service provider) rates are very reasonable and you can even use your Miles and More Account and pay with Miles.
1 hour: Euro 10.95 or 3500 miles
24 hours: Euro 19.95 or 7000 miles (obviously the most cost effective)
As far as the fleet update is concerned, Lufthansa currently has 43 total aircraft equipped with the technology.
A330 – 10 of 15 aircraft equipped with FlyNet
A340 and B747’s – 33 have FlyNet – (I suspect due to fleet modernization, that Lufthansa may focus their efforts into WIFI for new Aircraft as they’re added to the fleet)
Lufthansa is currently considering bringing FlyNet to European routes and in the process of reasearching and testing that possibility.