Skip to main content

These are the apps people use the most on in-flight Wi-Fi

A JetBlue airplane at the airport gate.
Andrew Martonik / Digital Trends

At this point, it’s easy to take for granted that we have fast and (mostly) reliable Wi-Fi in airplanes no matter where in the world we’re headed. (Some airlines even offer it for free.) But things have changed a lot since in-flight Wi-Fi was first introduced over two decades ago and became truly widespread just 10 years ago. Just like our habits in using the internet — both Wi-Fi and 5G — have changed on the ground, our demands in the air are strenuous, and we increasingly are unwilling to put up with a drop-off in internet speed just because we’re flying 400 mph some 35,000 feet in the air. Yes really.

JetBlue and its in-flight Wi-Fi provider Viasat recently hit a big anniversary, 10 years of partnership, and for the occasion gave us all a look at just how incredible the demand for in-flight Wi-Fi is, and at how we’re all using it. JetBlue says over 15 million smartphones connected to its in-flight Wi-Fi this year alone, compared to just 2 million laptops — and how are we using that connectivity? There are a couple of surprises.

To start, though, no surprise: The heaviest in-flight Wi-Fi use is for streaming video services. YouTube and Netflix have been among the most-used apps since 2017, JetBlue says. But over the last several years, the cohort has changed: Spotify and Apple Music used to be right there with them (surprising considering relatively low data usage of music vs. video), up until 2022 when they dropped off the top list, making it a group of solely video streamers.

Another surprise? This year, Peacock shot right to the top of the ranks of the most-used apps on Fly-Fi, I’m sure due in no small part to JetBlue’s partnership with the streamer offering an improved trial period. In 2023, the top group on Fly-Fi is Peacock, YouTube, Netflix, Disney+, and Amazon Prime Video.

A history of JetBlue's partnership with Viasat for in-flight Wi-Fi.
JetBlue

Here’s the breakdown of the most-used apps on Fly-Fi, and how it’s changed since 2017:

  • 2017: YouTube, Spotify, Netflix, Amazon Prime
  • 2018: YouTube, Spotify, Netflix, Amazon Prime
  • 2019: YouTube, Apple Music, Spotify, Netflix
  • 2020: YouTube, Netflix, Apple Music, Spotify
  • 2021: Netflix, YouTube, Apple Music, Spotify
  • 2022: YouTube, Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime
  • 2023: Peacock, YouTube, Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime

Now all I want to know is what person has used the most data on JetBlue Fly-Fi this year. Considering how much YouTube I stream on flights, I could be near the top.

Andrew Martonik
Andrew Martonik is the Editor in Chief at Digital Trends, leading a diverse team of authoritative tech journalists.
Best Samsung Galaxy S22 deals: Save big on unlocked models
The back of the Galaxy S22 and Galaxy S22 Plus.

Samsung recently released the Samsung Galaxy S24, and one of the best times to get yourself some savings on outgoing models is right after a new product release. That makes the Samsung Galaxy S22 a hot commodity when it comes to landing a deal right now, as it's the new "old" device and there are a lot of Samsung Galaxy S22 deals available to pounce on. It’s been a popular phone for quite some time and still can compete with the hardware we’re seeing in many of the best phones. You’ll be able to find Galaxy S22 deals at a number of different retailers, and we’ve done the heavy lifting of tracking them all down and putting them in one place. Read onward for the current best Samsung Galaxy S22 deals and some information on where it’s best to buy.
Samsung Galaxy S22 deals at Samsung

Samsung will be the first place to go to if you're looking for discounts on the Samsung Galaxy S22. The unlocked version of the 128GB model is still going for its retail price of $700, but you can get up to $525 off by trading in your current smartphone. This drops its price to just $175 if you get a full trade-in value, and that credit can also go toward the Samsung Galaxy S22+, which is regularly priced at $1,000.

Read more
Samsung may have a big surprise in store with its next folding phone
A person holding the open Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5, showing the screen.

As Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2024 continues in Barcelona, Spain, there are whispers that Samsung could be releasing not one, but two Galaxy Z Fold 6 models. More specifically, one of them could be a Galaxy Z Fold 6 Ultra, at least according to a report from WinFuture. If this is the case, it will be the first time that Samsung releases two Z Fold variants at the same time — and the first time we've seen an Ultra model in the Z Fold family.

For some time now, there has been a rumor that Samsung was possibly launching a second “fold” in the Galaxy Z series, which currently includes the Galaxy Z Fold 5 and Galaxy Z Flip 5. However, most of the rumors up until this point have suggested that a second “Fold” model would have been a cheaper, more affordable variant. However, that may not be the case.

Read more
How to reset an iPad: soft reset, force restart, and factory reset
The iPad (2022) in its yellow color.

When it comes to reliable hardware, few brands are as respected as Apple. Its lineup of iPhones, iPads, and MacBook's are among the best on the market, and they're known to run for years without encountering any serious issues. However, not even Apple is perfect – and every so often, you'll need to reset your device to get rid of a glitch.

Read more