Viasat has signed a multi-year In-Flight Connectivity (IFC) content partnership with the National Basketball Association (NBA) to make its live game subscription service NBA League Pass available to airline passengers.
The partnership will provide a streaming experience in the sky, enabling airline passengers to access live and on-demand NBA games and content on their personal electronic devices at no extra cost when they register for NBA League Pass in-flight. JetBlue will be one of the first airlines to offer NBA League Pass on Viasat-equipped aircraft, with additional airlines expected to be announced.
The service will begin for the 2021 NBA Playoffs, which start May 22. Viasat will enable access to the premium version of NBA League Pass – featuring every NBA game live and on-demand – to passengers onboard aircraft with Viasat In-flight connectivity. NBA League Pass will be available on any route, except for flights within the US, Canada and China; international flights to and from these three countries will also have access to the service.
Speaking about the partnership, Matt Brabants, NBA Senior Vice President, Global Media Distribution and Business Operations, said: “We are thrilled to provide fans around the world with the unique opportunity to experience the excitement of the NBA on their personal devices while in-flight at 35,000 feet. By leveraging Viasat’s world-class satellite technology and global reach, we believe this partnership will transform the future of content consumption for airline passengers and allow us to engage millions of new and existing NBA fans in a whole new way.”
Dave Elliot, Viasat Managing Director, Media & Mobile Applications, added: “We’re focused on evolving the way passengers enjoy in-flight internet by offering differentiated, premium over-the-top content and streaming experiences. We continue to explore and announce new partnerships, like the NBA. The trend to market content – and in this case, league assets – directly to customers is powerful, and offers more opportunity to drive customer acquisition through new business models that haven’t been previously offered through packaged, linear TV viewing.”