KUALA LUMPUR - Low-cost carrier AirAsia is offering on board WiFi service, a first in Malaysia.
For the moment, the service is only available on four of the airline's 160 aircraft and up to 90 devices per plane.
Also, passengers will only be able to use it for mobile messaging applications, such as WhatsApp, Line and WeChat, until AirAsia expands it to e-mail, Facebook and Twitter over the next year. BlackBerry Messenger is not supported, but users of that brand can use WhatsApp or other messaging applications.
Flights providing the WiFi service will be marked with signs aboard the aircraft and there will be announcements from stewardesses.
AirAsia Group ancillary head Kenny Wong said the initial roll-out of the service, known as roKKi Chats, is to gauge passengers' response.
The service will be available on a first-come, first-served basis, although he said that it would eventually be possible to pre-book and perhaps, buy season passes. It is priced at RM8 (S$3.10) per 3Mb of data.
"But there is a promotional rate of RM5/3Mb over the next one or two months," Wong said at the launching ceremony yesterday.
The service, available on domestic and international flights, will be extended to 15 more planes by year-end and to the rest of the fleet early next year.
AirAsia chief executive officer Aireen Omar said the carrier was "very proud" of its achievement.
It also earned an entry in the Malaysia Book of Records for it.