Air Berlin has become the first airline to operate an inflight 3G connectivity service.
The Aeromobile 3G eXPhone technology has been fitted to an A330-200 aircraft with the registration D-ABXC.
It allows passengers to use their own 3G-enabled mobile devices to send text messages and use the internet "much closer to the experience on the ground".
Phone calls are not allowed and passengers are billed directly by their network provider.
The 3G technology is in the process of being fitted across the German carrier's entire long-haul fleet. Air Berlin currently offers a non-3G internet service on all of its short, medium and long-haul flights.
Aeromobile said in a statement: "AeroMobile will start to roll-out 3G connectivity across other partner airlines in the months ahead."
Air Berlin passengers flying long-haul now have the option of paying an additional €79.99 for an "XL" economy seat (see news, September 2).