The National Basketball Association (NBA) and Viasat Inc. , a global communications company and leading in-flight connectivity provider to many of the world’s most recognizable airlines, today announced a groundbreaking multi-year partnership to make NBA League Pass, the league’s premium live game subscription service, available to millions of airline passengers while in flight. 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.
Available during the 2021 NBA Playoffs, which will tip off Saturday, 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 U.S., Canada and China; international flights to and from these three countries will also have access to the service.
“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,” said NBA Senior Vice President, Global Media Distribution and Business Operations, Matt Brabants. “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.”
“We’re focused on evolving the way passengers enjoy in-flight internet by offering differentiated, premium over-the-top content and streaming experiences,” said Viasat Managing Director, Media & Mobile Applications, Dave Elliot. “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.”
NBA League Pass provides the most comprehensive live and on-demand access to an entire season of NBA games in high-definition with live stats, alternative audio and multiple viewing options. Passengers on NBA League Pass-enabled flights will be able to use the speed and efficiency of Viasat’s global satellite network to access NBA platforms, create or sign into an existing NBA account, and immediately access League Pass’s Next-Generation game viewing enhancements, including new camera angles, multiple in-language streams, celebrity influencer commentary, in-depth analytics and statistical graphics and condensed games for on-demand viewing.
Viasat serves the world’s leading airlines, elevating the passenger journey with a network that is built to support the rising data requirements of the latest internet, streaming and over-the-top trends, even at 35,000 feet. The Company currently has an international satellite network consisting of owned and partner high-capacity Ka-band satellites to deliver high-quality, fast connectivity – even in the hardest-to-reach places. NBA