Qantas' oneworld alliance partner American Airlines will add Gogo Vision video streaming over wifi to 400 of its aircraft -- nearly two thirds of its fleet -- by the end of 2012.
Currently, only 15 planes (its cross-country Boeing 767-200 fleet) have streaming enabled, as Australian Business Traveller reported last month.
But the system has clearly been a success, and American is rolling it out across its network. So when you connect from Qantas at Los Angeles or Dallas/Fort Worth, you'll be able to pull down your choice of entertainment on much of the AA network.
Wireless streaming, where your laptop, tablet or other wifi-enabled device pulls video from a server on the plane (rather than from the ground via the Internet), is being mooted by many airlines as the solution to quickly-dating in-flight entertainment systems.
If you try out the American Airlines Gogo service before 15 October this year, you'll find introductory pricing (99c for a TV show or $3.99 for a movie). You'll also get a free pass for Gogo's wifi access on a subsequent flight -- although you don't have to buy wifi access to be able to use the streaming video.
Gogo Vision has around 200 movies and TV shows on offer, and you'll be able to watch your purchase after you land too. Movies are available for 24 hours after landing, while TV shows expire after 72 hours. You'll need to use the same device and browser you used for purchase.
Of course, if you've a long flight ahead, your laptop will need power. American has power points in both business and economy on most of its fleet, but check the status of your flight's plane on American's inflight powerports list.
About John Walton
Aviation journalist and travel columnist John took his first long-haul flight when he was eight weeks old and hasn't looked back since. Well, except when facing rearwards in business class.