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December 17, 2013

Five tech-savvy airports

The best places to get some work done (or check out those cute cat memes) before your flight.

By Joe Curtis

JFK Airport (New York)

JFK is so gadget-friendly some of its restaurants even let you order meals via iPad.

More than 180 of the tablets are installed in terminals two and three, where upscale eateries offer their full menus through the devices to enable quick table service.

The devices can be used by anyone to surf the web on the free Wi-Fi, check email and more, while adjacent to each is an electrical outlet equipped with USB ports for charging devices.

Trouble is, they’ve proved so popular they’re nearly always in use, prompting Delta Airlines, which funds some of JFK’s services, to plan an expansion of the number of iPad kiosks over the coming years.

JFK airport terminal

Dallas/Fort Worth Airport

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The seven-runway behemoth that is Dallas/Fort Worth Airport in Texas is currently in the process of having four of its five terminals upgraded to the tune of $2.3bn.

It boasts Wi-Fi access points with average download times of 2.73mbps, and has made partners in firms like Samsung, which provides 64 charging stations, seven mobile travel lounges, work stations with power outlets while large flat-screen TVs pop up all over the airport.

Texan cowboy

Charlotte Douglas International Airport

Not only does this airport boast free Wi-Fi, but it boasts one of the download and upload speeds of 11.54 and 13.72 mbps respectively. That means those cute cat tumblr feeds will load even faster onto your phone.

They even have a helpful email address to send a message to if you can’t access it – though, to be fair, I’m not sure how fliers will do that if they can’t use the Wi-Fi.

Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport

Samsung has installed its very own ‘power poles’ throughout this airport for people to charge their phones, and the airport also has plans to build a virtual newsstand, it says, where fliers can rent iPads to load with various publications, movies and music to enjoy on their flights.

All you have to do upon landing at your destination is drop it into a prepaid postage box.

Phone charger

Singapore Changi Airport

The place to go to get work done. Even more than your office. Seriously, it’s worth the commute.

Free Wi-Fi is available at the 550 internet kiosks there, 3G services are there to rent and there’s even plasma TVs for when you just have to catch up with Jeremy Kyle (or the Singaporean equivalent).

For the old school, there’s a few business centres where you can type, mail documents and photocopy and fax stuff, if you want to get all ’80s.

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