Delta Air Lines has selected Viasat for an additional 230+ domestic mainline, narrow-body aircraft, expanding the future scale of Delta’s next-generation onboard experience. Under this expansion, select aircraft from Delta Air Lines’ Airbus 321neo, Airbus 220-300, Boeing 737-800, Airbus 320ceo and Airbus 319 fleets will be retrofitted with Viasat’s next-generation Ka-band satellite technology.
This new aircraft award is in addition to the more than 300 Delta aircraft already announced in January 2021.
The airline plans to outfit more than 550 aircraft with high-speed, streaming-quality Wi-Fi service by the end of 2022, with all of Delta’s Airbus A321ceo, Boeing 737-900 and 757-200 fleets outfitted by the end of 2021. Select aircraft from the carrier’s Airbus A321neo, A220-300, A320ceo, A319 and Boeing 737-800 fleets will begin installation in 2022.
“Customers expect the very best when they fly with Delta, and our investments in a best-in-class onboard experience will give them even more reasons to look forward to their next flight,” said Byron Merritt, V.P. – Brand Experience.
From June, Delta customers will be able to purchase access to high-speed Wi-Fi onboard Viasat-equipped aircraft for US$8 per device, per flight, to stream video or music, browse websites, connect to email, use apps and more on their own personal electronic devices. Additionally, a single Viasat high-capacity Ka-band satellite antenna will power IFC while simultaneously providing live TV access to the seatback screens.
Delta’s investment paves the way for offering Free Wi-Fi in the future.
“By equipping more than 230 additional aircraft with Viasat IFC, Delta is validating how the system can scale,” said Don Buchman, Viasat Vice President and General Manager, Commercial Aviation. “We have a proven in-flight connectivity solution that will meet the demands of Delta customers today and the expected increase in demand in the future.”
Select Delta aircraft will be outfitted with Viasat’s latest Ka-band IFC system and will be compatible with Viasat’s complete network of satellites, including Viasat’s first-generation spacecraft and partner satellites, its second-generation spacecraft ViaSat-2, and the forthcoming ViaSat-3 constellation, which is expected to offer global coverage with nearly eight times more capacity than Viasat’s current fleet.
By combining industry-leading Wi-Fi, seatback entertainment on nearly all Delta aircraft* and the Delta Portal Platform, customers can expect an unparalleled personalized experience onboard – a new era of onboard entertainment Delta calls the ‘Connected Cabin.’
The airline is testing ways to bring more features to every seat. Capabilities of the Connected Cabin may include everything from ordering food and beverages directly from seatback screens to personalised content recommendations for every customer. In the future, the carrier plans to integrate Delta SkyMiles profile information, Delta Studio content and customer flight information for a seamless, fully personalised experience. More details on features coming onboard will be shared in the coming months.
A more connected experience onboard has benefits for Delta’s flight crews as well. The system plans to integrate Flight Attendant SkyPro devices and send real-time operational data to maintenance teams to better identify issues for proactive service.