On January 12, 2017, Routehappy, an aviation content development and research firm, released their much anticipated 2017 Wi-Fi Report. The report looks at Wi-Fi data and tracks which airlines offer in-flight Wi-Fi as well as its availability to consumers by chance, quality, coverage, and cost, tracked by subfleet, cabin, and flight.
The report, Routehappy states, “is based on an analysis of all flights worldwide on a typical weekday travel day that have at least a chance of Wi-Fi by scheduled subfleet, providing the most comprehensive look at in-flight Wi-Fi across the 70+ airlines that now offer it.”
The report calls-out some quick points up-front:
- The industry as a whole made great progress over the prior year, with more aircraft connected than ever before, including 11 airlines that now offer in-flight Wi-Fi for the first time.
- As of January 2017, 39 percent of available seat miles (ASMs) worldwide have at least a chance of Wi-Fi on board, an 8 percent increase over last year.
- The ASMs with at least a chance of Wi-Fi jumps to 83 percent when looking strictly at U.S.-based airlines, a 6 percent increase over last year.
So, how did Viasat and its customers do? Here’s a quick way to look at the data:
Wi-Fi availability increased to 39 percent of ASM (Available Seat Miles) globally, with 7.2 percent rated BEST (up from 6 percent). ViaSat in-flight Wi-Fi customers were noted in the BEST Wi-Fi rating category.
Routehappy stated: “The overwhelming majority of flights operating with BEST Wi-Fi are found on JetBlue and some United flights.” Routehappy projects that “flyers will see a big increase in BEST Wi-Fi available” by the end of 2017.
Now operating on JetBlue, Virgin America, United, and EL AL, ViaSat in-flight internet service is coming soon to American Airlines, Qantas, Finnair and SAS.