Free texting will be available for all cell phone providers and all the popular messaging apps, like iMessage, WhatsApp, and Facebook Messenger. Of course, you'll only be able to whip out your phone and text once you've reached the cruising altitude of 10,000 feet.
"We're in the business of connecting people, connecting the world," Bastian said in the interview. "And we want our customers while they're flying to stay connected to their homes and their friends."
Delta is partnering with the Gogo in-flight internet service to make the mile-high SMS club a reality. To send messages, just download the Gogo app (free) before you board, and through that you'll be able to connect to all the messaging apps.
But, of course, this doesn't mean you'll be able to actually talk on your phone: "Never. Never in my lifetime," said Bastian. And as for the question of free Wi-Fi? "People want Wi-Fi. The problem we have is the bandwidth still isn't strong enough — the satellite bandwidth," he said. "Today, we still have to charge too much because the quality is not there yet. But we'll eventually get to a point where there's free service in the air and you'll have ubiquitous service and capacity in the cabin."
While you may have to wait a little longer for certain perks, it's still pretty awesome to know that in a few days, you'll be able to text your friends "almost there" when you're 30,000 feet above the ground.