But as noted above, people are paying a premium to fly without the tech stop or any stop. They aren't being forced to endure. They are paying more to get there faster.
I think that perhaps, that's key
to understanding/contemplating/conceptualizing what QF is attempting to achieve here. I mean, I would perhaps also - not by choice fly this route. If I were at JFK though, the options of getting to SYD are resplendent (from respective, well-timed hub arrivals to every major aviation hub along the route). By that measure, even contemporarily - QF does so, impressively as well. I see this as adding value to their offerings (or, at least, proposing to do so). Who knows, perhaps the LAX-JFK legs will be sacrificed if indeed a SYD-JFK were possible; AA can more the gracefully pick up the slack on the route, to cater to those wishing to 'stretch their legs' at LAX, or even DFW if necessary, at superior scheduling flexibility (and even using that frequency to cater to high-yielding premium passengers that want a less 'brutal' way of getting there).
That said, QF is now eying ways to better capitalize upon their offerings, and - to be honest, are probably hoping for a 777-8 at better pricing. Who can blame them for trying?
Boeing now has the consideration;
Do they sell them the frames (as is) at a discount to 'compensate' them for the loss of performance (potentially, as QF will intelligently claim - over the life of performance - and QF will capitalize by likely using a less configuration to achieve a more actively workable load - all the while, walking away with a frame perfectly capable of flying any of the trunk routes easily without a penalty)?
Or, do they actually 'upgrade' the 777-8 further, and charge QF the premium for the frames? This runs the risk, though - of an image mirrored in the past, with the 772LR. Perhaps things will be different this time. Who knows, with some work - perhaps we can see a 778 upgrade the range a little further? They certainly did as they fine tuned to the 772LR and what it was able to accomplish in range. Sure, the timeline may 'annoy' QF, as the improvements will take time, and money - but perhaps is an apt investment if they calculate that the cost of fuel remains stable/low, and economic indicators show no ill effects brewing in the market to provide a prolonged challenge to the viability of the route).