"We believe we are now approaching the end of an era where passengers have paid very high prices for very slow connections."
American Airlines (NASDAQ: AAL) has selected ViaSat Inc. (NASDAQ: VSAT), a global broadband services and technology company, to outfit its new Boeing 737 MAX fleet with ViaSat's in-flight Internet service. The service encourages higher passenger engagement per plane by offering an 'at home' Internet experience when in-flight, with the ability to stream movies, videos, television and music, as well as surf the web, upload pictures to social media, email large files and more.
The new American planes will tap into the power of ViaSat's advanced high capacity Ka-band satellite system, which will include ViaSat-1, ViaSat-2 and ViaSat-3 satellite platforms, and has more capacity in orbit than any other in-flight Wi-Fi provider. American will leverage ViaSat's first two generation satellite platforms, which together provide more capacity than all of the commercial satellites over North America combined. When the first ViaSat-3 class satellite platform launches in 2019, it will more than double the capacity again. With its capacity-rich satellite platforms, ViaSat is able to deliver the fastest, highest quality in-flight Internet service to each connected device on a plane.
"Our satellite bandwidth enables an 'at home' Internet experience that can serve everyone on the plane, and empowers innovative business models for airlines and their passengers," said Mark Dankberg, ViaSat chairman and CEO. "We are delighted and honored to have the opportunity to work with American Airlines and help fulfill their goal of delivering the best in-flight Wi-Fi experience throughout their fleet. We believe we are now approaching the end of an era where passengers have paid very high prices for very slow connections. Our agreement highlights a significant initial step for American to deliver an onboard Wi-Fi experience every passenger will want to use."
As an Internet service provider, ViaSat already serves nearly 700,000 residential and business users with high-speed, high-quality satellite Internet. The ViaSat network is also the key to supporting thousands of simultaneously.
First Boeing 737 MAX aircraft with the ViaSat in-flight Internet system are scheduled to go into service in September 2017.