A Virgin America Airbus A320 now features the quote, “Stay Hungry, Stay Foolish” directly beneath the cockpit in tribute to the late Steve Jobs, reports CNET. The quote is taken from Jobs’s 2005 Stanford commencement speech and was suggest by a Virgin America employee. “The ‘Stay Hungry, Stay Foolish’ aircraft name was actually submitted as a tribute to Mr. Jobs by one of our employees in an internal plane naming competition,” said Virgin America spokesperson Abby Lunardini. Virgin has always looked to innovate the industry and it was the first airline company to offer fleet-wide Wi-Fi. It is also the only airline based in Silicon Valley, and the company likens itself to the late Apple co-founder. “The idea behind Virgin America was to reinvent the travel experience by thinking differently about design and service–we are known for the tech-forward amenities we offer onboard,” Lunardini said. More →
Today, Google announced that for the second year in a row it will be offering up free internet connectivity to holiday travelers. Last year during the holiday travel season, the company provided free Wi-Fi in airport terminals. This year, the search giant is taking the free Wi-Fi to the sky. Google has announced that Google Chrome will sponsor free, Gogo Inflight Wi-Fi service on domestic AirTran, Delta, and Virgin America flights from November 20, 2010 to January 2, 2011. “Just bring a Wi-Fi enabled laptop or mobile device and stay connected to family and friends while you travel,” writes Google. There you have it, free airborne 802.11… courtesy of Google Chrome. More →
Those that hate Google but travel frequently might feel a bit conflicted over the next couple of months because of Google’s holiday gift to America. Starting today and ending on January 15th, Google will be offering up free, no strings attached Wi-Fi at 47 airports while Virgin American flyers will be getting free in-flight Wi-Fi as of the 18th. The In addition to this, Google has set up a way for travelers at each airport to donate to charities Engineers Without Borders, the One Economy Corporation and Climate Savers Computing Initiative. Google will match each airports donations up to $250,000 and will also give the most generous airport $15,000 for the charity of its choosing.
Internet access and WiFi are becoming ubiquitous these days with coffee shops, libraries, bookstores and even McDonald’s offering some type of access to the net. We have been waiting for an airline to finally offer WiFi and it looks like Virgin America will be the first to offer it fleet-wide. If you subscribe to Virgin’s email notifications, you’ll notice that the airline company will be launching a beta of its Gogo® in-flight Internet service on November 22, coinciding with the first-ever live stream of YouTube. In addition to cash-less ordering of food and drinks, some of the largest behind-the-seat television screens, USB/Electrical/Ethernet ports at every seat and over 3000 MP3s at every seat, this new service is really going to help Virgin America take off. The WiFi will only be a beta at the end of this month but will be 100% live throughout its fleet in the Spring of 2009. Virgin America is now Serving San Francisco (hub), Los Angeles (secondary hub), Las Vegas, San Diego, Seattle, New York JFK, Washington DC Dulles and soon Chicago.
[Thanks, Roger A!]