BREAKING NEWS & VIEWS
People Takes to the Air in In-Flight Portal Deal
Thursday, November 3, 2011
A limited selection of People content will be featured in the free area of the GoGo portal, and paying customers who enter the full WiFi service will be able to access the People.com site on their laptops and tablets. In the initial roll-out with Delta, People will be immediately available on 500 planes.
Once a backwater of niche products with limited reach into business travelers with fat expense accounts, the WiFi portals that work in airports, now on flights, and in cafe's like Starbucks have become increasingly important as devices like tablets and mobile phones crave WiFi and connectivity everywhere is expected. Because these services require authentication and log-in, they are in a coveted gateway position that has been missing from the online world since the early days of Prodigy, AOL and ISP on-ramps. They constitute genuine "portals" where content partners have an opportunity to get first dibs on a user before they hit the Web in whatever way they like. Cutting partnerships with these network providers is a smart way for media companies to keep their brands foremost in people's minds and be the first to serve them news they might be on their way to retrieve elsewhere on the Web.
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