Google is no stranger to giving Chromebook owners a freebie or two. For example, all new purchases come with a handy 100GB of free Drive storage for two years.
In the US, Chromebook owners also receive Gogo in-flight Wi-Fi passes. Or rather they did; according to the Google Goodies support page the latest crop of Chromebooks are not eligible for the offer.
That sees the ASUS C200, Toshiba 13 and the new Samsung Chromebook 2 among those devices unable to get free in-air Wi-Fi. But will owners of those notebooks actually be missing out?
Going, Gogo, Gone
The Gogo freebie was first offered with the launch of the original Samsung Chromebook way back in 2012 and carried over with subsequent product releases. The promotion gifts American buyers with 12 in-air passes for Gogo’s inflight internet. These can be used on domestic US flights only and are valid until December 31, 2015. The passes have an equivalent monetary value of around $125.
Using the Gogo Wi-Fi sounds easy enough:
Simply connect to the “gogoinflight” WiFi network on any Gogo operated flight within the US. Open your browser and follow the instructions on the screen.
But it seems that the HP Chromebook 14 and the various Acer C720 Chromebook were the last to come with access to the offer. The Chrome Goodies support page states that the latest batch of Chrome OS devices are not eligible for the Wi-Fi passes.
It’s not all bad news. Anyone plumping for the eight-core Samsung Chromebook 2 or stylish Dell Chromebook 11 still get the rest of the goodies, which includes the aforementioned heap of cloud space plus an extended Google Play Music trial.
Those adamant that they want in-air internet can still buy an older model to take advantage of it, but since the offer expires next year you won’t have that long to make use of it.
While a nice touch to have you’d need to be a very frequent flyer to get the most out of the offer. Its omission is therefore unlikely to dissuade many from buying a newer Chromebook.
We have reached out to Google for comment. We will updated when/if we hear back.