Macbook Air: Airplane Power

Yep the MagSafe Airline Adapter totally worked.

That’s the first time ever that I’ve had power on a plane.

And I went for it.

Like Jay Allen said, I

turned the screen brightness all the way up, opened every app, compiled some software, started two movies running simultaneously and started calculating the quintillionth bit of pi; then edited a Huggacast.

I wanted to hear them fans blow; I also blogged with locally hosted Movable Type Pro, deleted a bunch of emails, and turned my screen so the traveler across the aisle couldn’t see what I was doing …

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Do these work with most airliners these days?  I’ve always wondered that, when I do travel it’s nice to have the extra juice, that’s for sure.

those airline interwebz… but how do they get teh cables for teh interwebz to the playnz

They work with airlines that have the jacks. Very few of the airlines have them installed. is relatively good at listing those.

On Continental, for example, only the first 19 rows on the US to Hawaii route have em-power. The rest of the rows have none. In first/business it’s one jack/seat in the few coach rows it’s two jacks per 3 seats.

Some other airlines have 110/220 at the seats, including United who has jacks with both US and European receptacles at the business class seats.

Virgin American has 110 at every seat, and will have Wifi on all of the planes by mid this year.

In my 100,000+ miles a year I have found probably five flights with EmPower jacks, and of those 2 of them I left the cable at home.

Personally the best flight ever for me was a business class seat on Luftanasa when they rolled out WiFi. I flew DC to Frankfurt with power and WiFi (for free—I was doing an article on the service) and I am probably the first person who ever played multiplayer network Starcraft at 40,000 feet over the atlantic.

@ David

Thanks correct and I checked Seat Guru before purchasing the adaptor. I’ve flown NWA that had 110, but it pulsed off/on and was unusable for my Macbook; oddly PC users were OK. Back in the salad days of blogging, we took a bunch of bloggers up in a Connexion by Boeing equipped 737—the event was called Blogging the Stratosphere. That service was amazing (Lufthansa used it), but doomed by 911. We had dudes on the flight running home video servers at 30K ft. They tried to bring it down and didn’t.

The MagSafe is nice, of course, cause it’ll pop off before your laptop gets pulled off the tray by your fellow traveler. I’ll have more updates to post, but the most noticeable difference with the Air is the lightness of getting it in/out of the bag for TSA, to use, and back in. I did however have a moment, when I realized that the iBike required DVD to install software and I didn’t do that before we left; C’est la vie. Maybe iBike has that software online somewhere. . . .

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