, 2023-01-07 16:23:05,
Having long vowed to offer complimentary Internet browsing to passengers, Delta Air Lines this week signaled it is ready to make good on its commitment, with CEO Ed Bastian promising from the floor of CES in Las Vegas that members of the carrier’s SkyMiles frequent flyer program will be able to avail of free Wi-Fi, with T-Mobile as sponsor, beginning on 1 February and on 700 Viasat Ka-band IFC-equipped domestic aircraft by the end of the year.
But while it’s certainly notable that a major US airline is ready to offer free Wi-Fi on most domestic flights, Delta is technically not a pioneer in this regard. JetBlue Airways has provided free Viasat-powered Internet to passengers for nearly ten years. And outside of the United States, a cluster of carriers have also seen fit to support this complimentary amenity.
Take Intelsat customer Japan Airlines, for instance. In 2017, JAL announced it would provide free Internet access to all customers flying on domestic routes, as supported by a traditional Gogo (now Intelsat) Ku-band airborne connectivity system which had been fitted years earlier to some 77 JAL aircraft, including Boeing 737s, 767s and 777s.
Now Japan Airlines has announced it is extending free onboard Internet to its Embraer E190 fleet, having already installed Intelsat’s more advanced 2Ku IFC solution on the first of 14 E190s operated by its regional commuter subsidiary, J-AIR.
The E190s previously only offered wireless IFE to passengers. By the fall of…
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