Gogo, the provider of inflight Wi-Fi for a large number of airlines, recently surveyed travelers regarding their inflight entertainment habits and preferences, and found that inflight Wi-Fi is the most popular form of inflight entertainment, among other interesting facts. For starters, the smartphone is the most popular digital device to bring on board a plane and use, and a very small number of travelers who bring their smartphone onto a plane don’t end up using it. Smartphones won the crown not because other devices are used less when brought on board or brought on flights less when owned, but because fewer people surveyed own laptops and tablets. To be specific, 81% of future travelers, those aged 18 to 35, brought a smartphone on their last flight, versus only 33% of those surveyed who brought along a tablet, and 32% who brought a laptop.
When it comes to inflight Wi-Fi, it’s a high priority item. 48% of future travelers surveyed said that they would choose a different flight if inflight Wi-Fi was not available on their preferred airline. Meanwhile, 63% of that subset thought that more flights should offer inflight Wi-Fi, 48% wished that inflight Wi-Fi was as fast as connections on the ground, and 47% would happily pay extra to stay connected constantly from gate to gate. The expectation for inflight Wi-Fi only jumped up by 7% when upping the flight time to four or more hours, while those wanting in-seat power for their devices and other types of available entertainment went up by over 20% altogether. Inflight Wi-Fi was right in the middle of the priority list for a flight, before all other entertainment options, and after big factors like price, scheduling, and meals.
A whopping 92% of future travelers surveyed said that they wanted to use their own devices with inflight Wi-Fi, and 48% said that they wanted to use inflight Wi-Fi to stream video or music content on their own device. There is a marked difference in preference between the group dubbed future travelers and those who fall outside of that group. One of the biggest examples of this dichotomy is the fact that 69% of future travelers surveyed were willing to pay for inflight Wi-Fi if it wasn’t available for free, while only 58% of those outside of that demographic said the same, an 11% difference.