There are few things more boring and uncomfortable than a long airplane trip. Some people don’t mind it much; they tap away at their laptops and get ahead with work, or read a book, or sleep for most of the trip. For other restless passengers, however, hours sitting among strangers is nothing less than torture. Fortunately, Hawaiian Airlines has found a way to ease the discomfort of these poor souls.
Starting today, Hawaiian Airlines is replacing all of its Boeing 767 flights’ current portable entertainment systems with iPad minis. The airline contracted Bluebox Avionics, a leader in providing In-flight Entertainment solutions, to help provide this new service. Hawaiian’s vice president of product development Blaine Miyasato said in a release, “We’re building on our acclaimed inflight service by incorporating the latest in popular consumer tech products to enhance our in-flight entertainment options.”
Hawaiian Airlines is issuing 1,500 iPad minis for B767 routes between Honolulu and cities in the United States, Japan, South Korea, Australia, Tahiti, and American Samoa, as well as routes between Kahlui, Maui, and the mainland U.S. The devices “offer a full-fledged entertainment experience and will enable passengers to pick from upwards of 100 hours of movies and TV shows” as well as several games. For business class flyers, the iPads are complimentary. For economy class, the tablets are offered for rent only on flights to North America, Australia, and American Samoa. Coach flyers can rent them for $15 before boarding or for $17 inflight, depending on availability.
Thus far, Hawaiian Airlines is the only carrier in the U.S. to offer iPad minis on its Boeing aircrafts. If this new venture proves successful for the airline, which it probably will, other airlines are sure to follow suit.