Flying is about to get a little more tolerable for some United Airlines passengers. In-flight Wi-Fi provider Gogo has announced that it has extended its contract with United, and will begin tripling its network speeds on select flights. Gogo says it will begin working with the airline to upgrade its Premium Service fleet to the Wi-Fi provider's new ATG-4 wireless network system, which uses directional antenna, dual modems and EV-DO Rev. B to increase network capacity.
The upgrade means that passengers flying on the aforementioned Premium Service flights will see networks speeds of as high as 9.8 Mbps, three times the speed of its current 3.1 Mbps connections. Those speeds might not be earth shattering (a good 4G LTE connection can get you up to 20 Mbps) but it should still be enough to send and receive emails, surf the web and download music without much problem.
Still, streaming movies and uploading large files will be out of the question, since you'll be sharing the entire 9.8 Mbps connection with everyone else on your flight. The roll-out is expected to begin in early 2013, and will be available on United's 13 Boeing 757 Premium Service aircraft operating out of New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport, Los Angeles International Airport and San Francisco International Airport.