Southwest Airlines has become the latest carrier to offer free in-flight entertainment.

“The on-board experience is one of the most important elements of a Customer’s journey with us,” said Ryan Green, vice president and chief marketing officer at Southwest Airlines. “Our research shows that a positive experience on-board the aircraft can greatly influence the decision to come back to Southwest. We listened to our Customers and are enhancing our already award-winning experience.” ~

Having previously charged for access to movies on-board Wi-Fi-enabled aircraft, passengers are now able to enjoy up to 30 movies and live TV, subject to licensing restrictions, via the Southwest mobile app.

The move follows the roll-out of free messaging via iMessage or WhatsApp on select flights last month and the introduction of iHeartRadio, a free all-in-one digital music and live streaming radio service.

Customers who already have the iHeartRadio app installed on their devices will be able to play their personalised music and favorite podcasts directly from the app while on-board select Wi-Fi-enabled aircraft. Those passengers who already subscribe to iHeartRadio’s All Access on demand subscription service also will have access to their entire music library and saved playlists as well as enjoy millions of songs and albums instantly.

Passengers can purchase in-flight Wi-Fi for US$8 a day per device on Wi-Fi-enabled aircraft, although it is not necessary to purchase Wi-Fi in order to use the free IFE on-board.

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