Viasat Commercial Aviation Blog

Broadband for all - Not just a dream, we're making it real

Because We Love to Fly

Let's Meet at APEX EXPO 2017 Flight has revolutionised the human experience, and commercial aviation has given us the freedom to live our dreams of travel, discovery and exposure to new cultures and places. And Wi-Fi internet is just as amazing, enabling instant access to all the world’s knowledge, entertainment and communications, even in the most challenging locations. ViaSat brings these two incredible innovations together and our vision is nothing less than the effective delivery of an unparalleled internet experience at 30,000 feet to every airline passenger, with additional benefits for flight crew, cabin crew and flight operations.

It’s All About the Experience

ViaSat already delivers the REAL internet to millions of airline passengers on many of the world’s leading airlines. Today we operate the world’s highest-capacity satellite network and are on track to deliver the first truly global, truly broadband network. We want every airline passenger to have access to the same connected experience they have on the ground, with the freedom to stream their favorite content and connect up to the people who matter most.

ViaSat-2 Launch: 25 April 2017

Ariane_5_(VA208)_(8218854876).jpgViaSat-1 (launched in 2011) now meets the broadband needs of 700,000 residential subscribers. In addition, the satellite powers in-flight Wi-Fi on more than 500 commercial aircraft from JetBlue, American Airlines, United Airlines and Virgin America, delivering video streaming speeds to each seat. ViaSat-1 also provides in-flight Wi-Fi to Air Force One.

At around 300 gigabits per second capacity, ViaSat-2 has about twice the bandwidth of ViaSat-1. ViaSat-2 will also expand coverage beyond North America and into Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean, parts of South America and over the Atlantic Ocean to Ireland, with transAtlantic air routes soon able to connect up to the best Wi-Fi in the sky. The satellite lifted off from French Guiana on an Ariane 5 rocket on June 1, 2017 and is due to enter service in 2018.

4 billion people are without internet access

ViaSat-CEO-mark-dankberg.jpgViaSat CEO, Mark Dankberg (pictured), keynote speaker at Satellite 2017 in Washington DC, is a firm believer in Broadband for All. Already, ViaSat broadband service delivers access to the internet, with all its potential for education, communication and development, outside the USA and into impoverished communities that had little or no access before. Innovative business models and local infrastructure development have enabled the delivery of tangible benefits. Satellites have, in many ways, shaped our world. And satellites have the potential to fix the imbalances in the way we access the internet. Today, 46% of the world's population has access to the internet. That leaves over 4 billion people without access.

As we work to build the future, we will ensure that airline passengers and crew get the very best connectivity, while remembering those on the ground. The unconnected, who gaze up at our contrails, deserve access to education and communications so that they too will have the opportunity to join us in the clouds.

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Image credits

Ariane 5 - By Spotting973 (Ariane 5 [VA208]) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

ViaSat CEO, Mark Dankberg - ViaSat