Emirates is offering a complimentary 10MB of internet data to all its passengers across all service classes.
The Gulf airline will provide the service onboard its 53 A380 and 28 B777 aircraft.
While the complimentary 10MB should be sufficient for most passengers, heavier users will hav to pay a $1 charge for every additional 600MB.
Given that many carriers offering similar services impose charges exceeding US$10, often per hour, Emirates’ service could be considered something of a breakthrough, especially in the economy cabin.
Emirates believes the move will strengthen its market position and result in new business.
It said it saw a daily average of 3,500 passengers using onboard wifi last month, with data usage averaging about 28MB per passenger.
Emirates’ market research also shows that most passengers use data to access Google, Facebook, and chat services like Skype, WhatsApp and BBM, reflecting a desire to stay connected to friends, family and colleagues inflight.