JetBlue to Launch Onboard Wi-Fi by 2012

By Diane Cordemans
Diane Cordemans
Diane Cordemans
September 23, 2010 Updated: October 1, 2015

JetBlue announced Thursday that they are going to upgrade their Wi-Fi capabilities in their aircraft. (Scott Olson/Getty Images)
JetBlue announced Thursday that they are going to upgrade their Wi-Fi capabilities in their aircraft. (Scott Olson/Getty Images)
JetBlue passengers could soon be treated to the best in-flight broadband service for commercial aviation, JetBlue's Chief Executive Officer said in a media release.

A memorandum of understanding (MOU) entered into by JetBlue Airways and ViaSat Inc. involves using ViaSat's innovative high-capacity satellite technology on 160 Jetblue aircraft.

"In just the three years since we launched BetaBlue, the first commercial aircraft with simple messaging capability, technology has advanced by generations,” Barger said in a statement.

The changes are slated to go into effect by mid-2012.

ViaSat will provide the airline company with their antenna parts and components in order to provide bandwidth for satellite television and broadband.

Mark Dankbert, CEO of ViaSat, said he believes that the deal will play a role in transforming the satellite broadband industry.

"The breakthrough bandwidth economics of ViaSat-1 extends the passenger internet experience beyond just e-mail and web pages and creates a world of possibilities for personalized broadband entertainment," he said.

The high-capacity satellite technology must be tested and certified by the US Federal Aviation Administration before fitting the whole fleet.

A Computerworld report in July noted that a third of domestic air carriers have Wi-Fi and Internet access.