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Jetstar airline to offer in-flight iPads in April

David Quilty
David Quilty|February 15, 2011 8:00 PM

Jetstar iPadBack in June 2010 we first reported on a pilot program by Qantas Airways' low-cost airline Jetstar to offer iPad rentals as in-flight entertainment, and now we have learned that Jetstar will finally start offering them in April for AUD$10 per flight. According to Australian Business Traveler, the in-flight iPads will come loaded with "movies, music, magazines, books and games" and will be available on Jetstar's A320 flights in Australia and Asia.

Jetstar had initially intended to launch the rental program in time for the holiday season after successful trial runs last summer, but due to contract negotiations and pending licensing agreements with Apple, they weren't able to get it ready in time. In talking with Australian Business Traveler, Jetstar marketing manager David May said that "if the trial works, we want to put them on every aircraft because they're so much slimmer and lighter than our existing units," and I imagine we will be seeing many other airlines follow suit.

With some airlines already offering integration between iPods and in-flight entertainment systems and iPads being used as electronic flight bags for pilots, just how far off are we from flying Apple Airlines? Anyone care to take a guess?