Delta has announced a sweeping new initiative that will eventually overhaul in-flight entertainment on all of its long domestic flights. Marilyn Adams, reporting last week for USA Today, writes that Delta "will unveil an in-flight entertainment system that gives every passenger on long domestic flights access to on-demand movies, TV, music and games ... When installation of the seatback system is complete, every passenger in first class and coach on U.S. flights of four hours or more will be able to choose from 20 movies, 24 channels of live TV, 1,600 songs and 10 video games."
In boxing terms, this is like when a boxer is on the ropes (or, in this case, withering under Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection) and comes out swinging like there's no tomorrow anyway. Delta is clearly looking to build on the appeal of its former low-fare wing, Song, and it's doing it in the most aggressive way possible: matching popular low-cost carriers like JetBlue in the one area where Delta was clearly lacking.
Still, let's not get too excited just yet. Delta's movie selection will be free for first-class flyers, but cost $5 for coach flyers—as if the cramped seats and lack of elbow room weren't insult enough already.