American Airlines offers free live TV through Dish

United Airlines Boeing 757-200
An American Airlines airplane sits on the tarmac at Terminal 1 of Barcelona El Prat Airport on September 09, 2018 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by Horacio Villalobos—Corbis via Getty Images)

a person holding a laptop
You might not be stuck watching a handful of mediocre movies (or your offline copies of streaming shows) the next time you’re on a long-haul flight.American Airlines and Dish recently started offering free live TV for domestic US flights aboard 100-plus aircraft with Gogo’s 2Ku satellite access. It won’t match your service back home, but you will have access to a dozen major networks including CNN, ESPN, NBC and Telemundo. And you don’t have to squint at a small seatback display — you can stream the channels directly to your laptop or mobile device.

The service will spread to AA’s fleet of over 700 mainline, narrow-body aircraft throughout 2019.The company is in the midst of an upgrade plan that will bring more power outlets to its aircraft, too, reducing the chances that you’ll reach your destination with a low battery. This could make the airline more alluring if you’re not in the mood to read books or listen to podcasts in mid-flight.However, there’s also a decided advantage for Dish.This serves as a kind of ad for Dish’s satellite and streaming TV offerings.If it works well, you might be inclined to subscribe to one of those services when you’re back on terra firma.

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