JetBlue aircraft will be upgraded to the latest ViaSat hardware, and will have access to the additional coverage and capacity offered by ViaSat's next generation ViaSat-2 and ViaSat-3 satellite platforms
JetBlue first offered the ViaSat in-flight internet service, branded Fly-Fi®, in December 2013. Four years later, the airline continues to be recognized as having the industry's "Best Wi-Fi" in the sky — most recently accepting an award for its Fly-Fi service at the September 2017 Airline Passenger Experience (APEX) show. 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.
JetBlue's commitment enables the airline to access ViaSat's advanced high-capacity Ka-band satellite system, which includes the ViaSat-1, ViaSat-2 and ViaSat-3 satellite platforms. These capacity-rich satellite platforms, enable ViaSat to deliver the fastest, highest quality in-flight internet service to each connected device on a plane.
To tap into the satellites, ViaSat's latest in-flight internet system will be installed onto JetBlue aircraft beginning in fall of 2018. The equipment offers forward and backward satellite platform compatibility, allowing JetBlue to meet the growing broadband demands of the fully connected aircraft. This future-proofing feature ensures JetBlue can cost-effectively deploy the ViaSat equipment today, and take full advantage of the more than 3.5 terabits per second (Tbps) of total expected future global capacity ViaSat will be bringing to market through its next generation of satellite platforms.
Mariya Stoyanova, JetBlue's director of product development, stated that from day one, the company set out to offer the best onboard internet experience available and a great decision was made by installing ViaSat's equipment. JetBlue has seen tremendous value from the Fly-Fi service — from driving customer loyalty with the ability to offer new, exciting applications through streaming partnerships to the positive effect on the company's bottom line. This new deal with ViaSat gives JetBlue the ability to tap into a robust communications satellite network, at far better economics, enabling the company to build-out plans for a fully connected gate-to-gate experience.
Don Buchman, VP and GM, Commercial Mobility, ViaSat, noted that JetBlue and ViaSat have a similar strategic vision for in-flight internet service: make it fast, make it high-quality, make it affordable. Since the beginning of this partnership, ViaSat has focused on delivering the best service, with the best economics to enable JetBlue to offer the gold standard in in-flight Wi-Fi. This latest deal solidifies this vision and this partnership for years to come.