In the not-so-distant future, I'll be able to accomplish all of this from the plane. That's because Delta Airlines (which is buying Northwest) will have all their planes WiFi equipped by next summer. For $9.95 on flights under three hours (and $12.95 on longer flights), I'll be able to answer email, surf the Internet, check out client stations on Mediabase, write blogs, and yes, stream audio and video.
I'll buy it on many flights, as I suspect will many of my travel mates who are flying on business. Aside from the ability to be productive while flying (about the only part of my travel schedule where I currently cannot go online), there's also the entertainment value aspect of the Internet.
This probably does not bode well for the newspaper and magazine industries. Up until now, they've pretty much had a monopoly on news and information on planes. Yes, you could bring an iPod, or DVD player (or use the one in your laptop) to watch a movie. But if you wanted reasonably current info and entertainment, you had to rely on print.
So in a small way, there's opportunity for radio, because here's a location where it was once impossible to tune in a favorite station or show. But as more airlines install WiFi on their planes, listening to the radio while flying could be essentially no different than tuning in while driving a car during the morning commute.
WiFi in the skies means another application where a clean, high-quality, well-promoted stream can start paying dividends. And it's another reason why stations need to continue to think of themselves as entertainment/information content providers, regardless of the distribution outlet.
I'll be listening to you... from up here.