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JetBlue & Continental to offer Wi-Fi on their fleet (U.S. only)

April 12, 2011

JetBlue

JetBlue confirmed today that it will install satellite based Wi-Fi on its entire fleet of 170 aircraft starting in mid-2012, at a cost of about $30 million. LiveTV, a wholly owned subsidiary of JetBlue, and ViaSat are partnering to bring Ka-band satellite broadband services to the carrier’s Airbus A320 and Embraer E190 aircraft.

No particular pricing has been outlines by JetBlue, but is looking into offering different pricing levels depending on how much bandwidth a customer might use. Similar to other hotels pricing model, JetBlue may offer different pricing for customers who want to just check emails and for those who want to watch movies online.

Continental

United / Continental announced in March that Continental Airlines submitted a letter of intent to add Wi-Fi internet service on more than 200 domestic Boeing 737 and 757 aircraft that are already equipped with DIRECTV. The new Wi-Fi will be installed only on Continental aircraft. United Airlines currently operates 13 aircraft with GoGo internet and one with Row44 internet, all on Boeing 757s. The new Wi-Fi will be using LiveTV’s Ka-band ViaSat-1 satellite service.

The airline hopes to start offering the new service starting in the beginning of 2012 and does not know when the installations will be complete. At this time, pricing for the new service has not been finalized.

Currently, United and Continental are still operating as separate carriers as they proceed through the merger process. Passengers will start to see more commonality between the two carriers in the coming months. United has already started with re-painting planes in a common brand and have announced that Economy Plus will be added to Continental aircraft.

[Source: AOL Travel]



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