- Dec 6, 2004
After stepping off my SYD-MEL flight yesterday morning, I noticed a DJ plane parked at Gate 2 with a strange looking hump on the top near the tail. It was later confirmed that this was indeed the first plane with Live TV on its maiden run. This is a very cool development in IFE in Australia and puts Virgin Blue way ahead of its competition.theaustralian.news.com.au said:Switched-on Virgin Blue beams in 24 channels of live television
Steve Creedy, Aviation writer
August 25, 2006
It may have been a long time coming, but Virgin Blue is about to become only the third airline in the world to offer live television on its flights.
The low-cost carrier's first aircraft sporting the new technology arrived in Australia last weekend from Orlando, Florida, and is expected to go into commercial service within two weeks.
Virgin has teamed with Foxtel and Austar to have 24 channels of live television beamed to its aircraft by satellite. It is believed the programs will be uncensored, meaning people will be able to watch news critical of Virgin, and even reports of air crashes.
The new "live2air" service, to be officially launched in Melbourne on Monday, will see seat-back video screens installed in every seat. It will be the first of its type in the Southern Hemisphere.
Content will include SkyNews Australia, Fox News, CNN, sports channels, children's programming and entertainment or music programs.
Virgin chief executive Brett Godfrey said the prototype aircraft was going though trials to iron out any remaining bugs before entry into service.
This would be followed by an intensive "nose-to-tail" modification program in New Zealand that would see the system introduced throughout the fleet within 10 months.
The arrival of the first plane ends a substantial delay caused by the need to provide aircraft with a bigger receiver to pick up the Australian PAL television signals.