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Just how bad do air travelers want to have in-flight Wi-Fi? According to a new study, they'd be willing to give up other creature comforts aboard aircraft in favor of wireless access.
Wired reported Thursday that a new study conducted by Honeywell reveals that a reliable Wi-Fi connection for their tablet, smartphone or laptop is far more important than a comfortable seat when it comes to flying the friendly skies.
As one of a number of companies involved in getting Wi-Fi installed on airplanes, Honeywell has a vested interest in the results of just such a survey, with a new satellite-based service launching in 2015.
The new survey involved more than 3,000 air travelers from the U.S., U.K. and Singapore, with 86 percent of travelers calling for Wi-Fi access each and every time they fly. Not surprisingly, a full 90 percent of those queried were unhappy with the current state of in-flight Wi-Fi.
A full 55 percent of U.S. passengers claim to be hopping online for purely personal reasons, while only 22 percent are getting any actual work done; those numbers were essentially reversed abroad.
When it comes to amenities, nine out of 10 passengers surveyed said they'd be willing to give up at least one thing in favor of a better Wi-Fi experience while flying.
For U.S. passengers, one-third were willing to give up the ability to recline their seat, while 38 percent showed a willingness to ditch their preferred seat instead. 42 percent were willing to ditch peanuts or other free snacks, while 25 percent said they'd pass on the drinks in favor of wireless access.
Honeywell claims its upcoming service will provide "full, reliable live-streaming capabilities" over land or water when it debuts in 2015, but until then, passengers will likely have to make the best of things.
Follow this article’s author, J.R. Bookwalter on Twitter