JetBlue Just Added Free, Really Fast Wi-Fi on Every Flight

Air travelers may now have another reason to choose JetBlue over other airlines: it's officially offering free Wi-Fi for all passengers.

JetBlue's Fly-Fi will run as fast as your home broadband speed, JetBlue says, and hopefully will let its customers keep working online or surfing the internet without interruption from departure gate to arrival gate. The service is available now on JetBlue's entire Airbus fleet, and will roll out to the company's E190 aircraft by the end of the year. 

Photo: Shutterstock

Photo: Shutterstock

Taking a jab at other air carriers, JetBlue says its Wi-Fi is better than the "sluggish" Wi-Fi you'd get on other companies' planes.

Currently, JetBlue's Fly-Fi runs at 15 MBps, while Gogo's most widely-used service, which is available on 17 airlines, runs at just around 3 MBps, according to some estimates. And Gogo costs money for most users. A one-hour pass to use WiFi via Gogo costs $7, day pass costs $19 and subscriptions can cost up to $719 per year for Gogo internet access across a number of airlines on domestic flights.

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JetBlue's service will be good enough to stream TV shows and movies via Amazon Video. And if you do any Amazon shopping online, JetBlue TrueBlue rewards program members will be able to earn extra points on purchases while on board, the company says.

Late last year, The Wall Street Journal reported that Gogo is working on making its internet speeds faster, possibly up to 100 MBps, but consumers aren't likely to see that happen until 2018. And even then, you'll likely have to pay for it.

Some T-Mobile customers may have free access to Gogo's WiFi, the company notes, and there are 100 planes, mostly Delta's, equipped with Gogo's new 2Ku satellite tech that can allow for internet speeds of 70 MBps or more, according to Gogo.

Althea Chang is Associate Director of Content Development for Consumer Reports and was previously a Senior Writer for Tom's Guide, covering mobile devices, health and fitness gadgets and car tech.