Seven airlines launch free in-flight Facebook FTW

Peanuts, check. Tomato juice, check. In-flight Facebook, check? Starting today, seven major airlines are offering a month of free Facebook as part of a promotion with Gogo in-flight Internet.

If you’re flying Virgin America, United Airlines, American Airlines, Delta, AirTran, US Airways and Alaska Airlines you will get to surf Facebook for free. If you want to surf other sites beyond Facebook you’ll have to pay anywhere between $4.95 and $12.95 depending on the length of your flight. 

But why would you ever want to visit any other site other than Facebook? The site already accounts for Gogo in-flight Internet’s most-visited site and on the Internet overall.

As Facebook continues to take over the world, the site will offer more features to make you miss other web pages less.

For example, TG Daily reported a VoIP button that mysteriously appeared a few weeks that could eventually offer voice calling through the popular social networking site.

Facebook is also moving more towards e-commerce, which will allow for shopping through FB itself in the future.

Besides Facebook, the other number one thing people do on Gogo in-flight Internet is check and send emails.

To keep users hooked worldwide, Facebook has just announced new messaging features modeled after Gmail that will include threaded conversations and more of a “real” email experience than what currently exists on Facebook.

With email embedded directly in Facebook, there will really be no need to navigate away from the site.

The idea of the promotion is to offer travelers a taste of the Internet while traveling in order to get them hooked on future flights where WiFi requires payment.

It’s like one of those (free) HBO or Showtime preview weekends,” says Glenn Fleishman, editor of Wi-Fi Networking News. “They want to get people accustomed to it and hook them.”

(VIa USA Today