American Airlines Attempting to Replace Gogo With ViaSat
This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.
Update: Gogo announced that American Airlines has dropped its lawsuit.
While American Airlines isn’t buying any goodwill with passengers on the loyalty program front, it is, however, investing in its in-flight product. First, the airline announced the installation of new seats and now, it’s looking to vastly improve its in-flight Wi-Fi.
When Gogo first launched its Wi-Fi product, many airlines, including AA, jumped on the chance to install the reasonably inexpensive product that would keep them competitive with other carriers. However, those who fly often know that Gogo’s current in-flight Wi-Fi product is mediocre, at best. It’s troubling to fly and not know whether you’ll have a steady and reliable internet connection.
So American is doing something about it. According to a Star-Telegram report, the carrier filed a lawsuit against Gogo, its current internet service provider, on the grounds that it essentially found a service that is faster. According to the contract between the two companies, American is allowed to leave if it finds a better service, which it claims it has — good news for AA flyers.
Coincidentally, as I was writing this, I was on an AA flight as part of my month-long OneGo journey — and the Wi-Fi lived up to its terrible reputation. I researched this post using Gogo Wi-Fi — it’s understandable why AA wants to replace it.
The new product that’s faster than Gogo, offered by ViaSat, is currently installed on United Airlines, JetBlue and Virgin America aircraft. Whereas American uses Gogo’s air-to-ground (ATG) system on about 200 of its aircraft, it plans to switch to ViaSat, which offers satellite-based Ka-Band Wi-Fi service that’s much faster than its ATG counterpart. Gogo plans to submit a competing proposal to AA featuring its own satellite technology, called 2Ku.
The satellite technology uses an antenna that faces up to the sky, rather than transmitters on the belly of an aircraft that pick up signals from land-based cell towers. On top of much faster service, satellite Wi-Fi keeps passengers connected when flying out of range of ground-based towers — including over the ocean.
AA didn’t settle for poor quality when it comes to seats and now it’s not going to settle with its Wi-Fi either. By taking steps toward a better in-flight experience for passengers, the carrier is attempting to make up for any ground lost as far as its recently announced AAdvantage devaluation goes.
Welcome to The Points Guy!
Earn 90,000 bonus miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new card in the first three months of card membership. Offer ends 11/10/2021.
With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.
- Limited Time Offer: Earn 90,000 Bonus Miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Offer expires 11/10/2021.
- Earn up to 20,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) with Status Boost® per year. After you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, you can earn 10,000 MQMs two times per year, getting you closer to Medallion® Status. MQMs are used to determine Medallion® Status and are different than miles you earn toward flights.
- Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
- Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery and at U.S. supermarkets.
- Earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.
- Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. *Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $75 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
- Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
- Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®.
- Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
- No Foreign Transaction Fees.
- $250 Annual Fee.
- Terms Apply.
- See Rates & Fees