ViaSat Inc. is set to serve as the direct in-flight internet service provider for JetBlue. With an expanded partnership, ViaSat said the airline would be upgraded to its latest hardware and gain access to additional coverage and capacity offered by ViaSat-2 and ViaSat-3.
"From day one, we set out to offer the best onboard internet experience available, and we made a great decision in installing ViaSat's equipment," said Mariya Stoyanova, JetBlue's director of product development. "We've seen tremendous value from the Fly-Fi service — from driving customer loyalty with our ability to offer new, exciting applications through streaming partnerships to the positive effect we believe it has had on our bottom line. This new deal with ViaSat gives us the ability to tap into a robust communications satellite network, at far better economics, enabling us to build-out plans for a fully connected gate-to-gate experience."
JetBlue started offering Fly-Fi in December 2013. According to ViaSat, JetBlue is “the only U.S. carrier that has deployed a fast and free in-flight Wi-Fi service for all devices — across its entire fleet — encouraging passengers to stream, web browse and use the internet as they would expect to at home or at work.”
ViaSat’s system is set to be installed onto JetBlue aircraft beginning the second half of 2018. The equipment would allow the airline to tap into ViaSat satellites and offer forward and backward satellite platform compatibility. This would allow JetBlue to meet broadband demands of the fully connected aircraft, ViaSat said. ViaSat expects it will eventually be able to bring more than 3.5 tbps of total global capacity with its next generation of satellite platfroms.