Virgin America teams up with Here On Biz to connect business passengers

Virgin America (San Francisco) has issued this statement about teaming up with Here On Biz:

Virgin America and Here On Biz, the app that ensures entrepreneurs never miss an opportunity to connect, have teamed up to launch the first in-flight social network – rolling out on all domestic Virgin America flights by the end of February.  With a growing following of always-connected, tech-forward business travelers, Virgin America will offer guests on flights nationwide the opportunity to “network on the fly” at 35,000 feet.  Travelers can download the free Here On Biz app from the Apple App store before their flight and use it in the air to locate LinkedIn connections on their Virgin America flight, at the airport or en route to a conference.  Relying on the airline’s fleetwide Gogo In-Flight WiFi network and purpose-built APIs that identify an aircraft’s location in the air, Here On Biz’s geo-location technology offers travelers the chance to connect via the app with guests on their specific flight, guests on other Virgin America flights in the air, or fellow travelers at their destination.  This month through July 2014, guests on all domestic Virgin America flights can access the Here On Biz app for free through the Gogo network.  App users can manage their privacy settings, so that travelers can shut off or limit their visible connections to others onboard.

In 2013, Virgin America surveyed a portion of its top Elevate frequent flyers in its New York, San Francisco and Dallas markets.  The ability to network in-flight with other Virgin America flyers was a suggestion that came out of these focus group sessions.  The Here On Biz app allows users to see business professionals nearby who are interesting and allows users to chat with those they are connected to.  The app provides the real time location of a user’s contacts through LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and those in the user’s address book who use the app.  In a unique partnership with Gogo and Virgin America, the app is now taking networking to 35,000 feet.

How the Virgin America-Here on Biz In-Flight network works:

  1. Download the new Here On Biz iOS app from the mobile app store before your flight.
  2. Register a new account using your LinkedIn profile.
  3. Rolling out to all domestic flights by the end of February, guests can start connecting when they log in at a gate or onboard at 35,000 feet via Gogo on Virgin America. App users will be able to connect with other Virgin America guests traveling on their particular flight, other travelers on any Virgin America aircraft currently airborne, or fellow Virgin America guests at their destination.

In May 2009, Virgin America became the first airline to offer fleetwide WiFi and today remains the only U.S airline to offer WiFi on every flight.  In 2011, the airline became the first carrier to launch Gogo’s improved ATG-4 WiFi service on select flights.  The ATG4 technology increases WiFi capacity by approximately four times the current performance through the addition of directional antenna, dual-modem and EV-DO Rev. B technologies.  The airline intends to complete its fleetwide installation of ATG-4 in 2014.  Virgin America is further investing in the connectivity of its fleet as the launch partner for Gogo’s next generation Ground to Orbit satellite WiFi technology. With power outlets at every seat, Virgin America regularly sees more than one-third of guests logging on to in-flight WiFi on its more popular long-haul flights.

Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/ Airbus A320-214 N361VA (msn 5515) with Sharklets prepares to start its takeoff roll at Los Angeles International Airport.

Virgin America: AG Slide Show

Current Routes from San Francisco:

Virgin America 2.2014 SFO Route Map