Delta now saying five aircraft a week will be equipped with Wi-Fi: Everything about putting Internet in the air seems to suffer from unexplained delays, but at least service is expanding. Slowly. Delta's Mike Kotas blogged on 15-January that they would be putting "upwards of 10 new wi-fi equipped aircraft per week" in the air starting that day.
On 18-February, a Delta product manager blogged that the firm is "averaging five installations a week," and have just 25 planes equipped, which is an increase of far less than 5 per week over the nearly 5-week period.
I've long been bullish on Aircell's flavor of in-flight Internet, expecting that the problems in getting service signed up and equipped have been more financial than technical. Airlines have gone through a horrible rollercoaster over the last year-plus. Fuel prices caused massive losses. The drop in jet fuel cost incurred large hedging losses. The economy's partial collapse reduced flyers, especially lucrative business travelers.
Delta has about 330 planes that they plan to install Wi-Fi on in the first wave, not including its Northwestern aircraft. At 5 planes per week, that puts them all in service before second quarter 2010, instead of the firm's earlier prediction of second half of 2009, which was itself revised to late 2009 last December.
At least they have a nice logo.