Wednesday, October 07, 2009

A Glimpse of the Future

I'm sitting on a Southwest Airlines 737, 40,000 ft above the western United States between Denver and Sacramento. On the first leg of the flight the WiFi didn't work for some unknown reason, but it was fixed during our stop in Denver. So far I've emailed, and Yahoo chatted with a few of my closest friends. Now I'm trying my hand at "sky blogging". I usually leave my computer in its bag so I'm learning to type while bouncing across the sky. 1.7 Mbps down, but it errored out on the Speakeasy upload test. But awesome download. I'd love to know more about the technology. If it is satellite, I'm not seeing the latency that I usually see. I'm also guessing at $10 for a 2 hour flight, that not a lot of people are partaking of the Internet goodness here. This is one of only 4 WiFi equipped planes that Southwest has, so getting to try this was just lucky on my part. When it works, it is on the pricey side, but it is awesomely and geeky cool.

Update: A quick Google tells me this is Ku band satellite. Now that I'm settling in I'm seeing some latency, but it is not as bad as Wildblue's heavily traffic shaped service. I certainly feel that I'm getting a good service for a high but not prohibitively high price.

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