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JetBlue pushing ahead with plan for free Wi-Fi on every flight by fall 2016

jetblue fly fi
Leonard Zhukovsky / Shutterstock
Low-cost carrier JetBlue is edging toward its goal of becoming the first U.S. airline to offer free high-speed Wi-Fi on all of its aircraft.

The New York-based airline said Wednesday it’s just completed installation of its free Wi-Fi service, known as Fly-Fi, on its fleet of around 150 Airbus A320 and A321 aircraft. In addition, the carrier announced it’s just flipped the Wi-Fi switch on the first of its 60 E190 aircraft with the aim of completing installation of Fly-Fi on its entire fleet by fall 2016.

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Commenting on its efforts to get passengers connected, Jamie Perry, JetBlue’s VP of brand and product development, said in a release, “Soon every JetBlue customer will step onboard knowing their aircraft is equipped with free, fast Internet and entertainment,” adding, “Our Fly-Fi model has proven that there is a way to offer customers more without adding extra costs to their travel.”

Considering its apparent popularity among travelers, JetBlue’s push to offer free, 20 mbps Wi-Fi to passengers is certainly a smart move. A survey conducted by Honeywell Aerospace in 2014 found that for 66 percent of U.S. fliers, Wi-Fi availability is an important factor when it comes to making a flight booking.

In a further move to attract more travelers to its service, JetBlue has partnered with Amazon to bring unlimited, on-demand entertainment via Amazon Instant Video. Free to Prime members and available to non-members for a small fee, the service offers access to Amazon’s vast library of movies and TV shows.

Amazon linked up with JetBlue to integrate its music and video storefronts into the Fly-Fi Hub, which also offers plenty of content from a host of other providers.

Of course, if free Wi-Fi and Amazon Video both fail to impress, there’s always the seat-back screen waiting to entertain.

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