Free Apple Music on American Airlines Flights Starting Friday

American Airlines domestic flights equipped with ViaSat satellite internet will offer free access to Apple Music starting Friday. Apparently American is really just acquiring customers for Apple Music, selling you a three month free trial. Always remember you’re the product, not the customer.

To enjoy Apple Music during flight, customers on Viasat-equipped aircraft can connect to Wi-Fi at no cost and log in with their Apple Music subscription. Customers who don’t already have an Apple Music subscription will be able to connect to Wi-Fi at no cost, sign up onboard and receive free access for three months. Apple Music is available on iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, Mac, Apple TV, PC, Android, CarPlay, HomePod, Sonos and Amazon Echo.

A three month trial is, after all, the standard Apple Music offer. You don’t even get a better deal on Apple Music signing up inflight. The only thing really going on here is ‘whitelisting’ — you don’t have to buy internet to get access to this.

American is in the process of rolling out high speed satellite internet across its domestic fleet split between Gogo and ViaSat, with more ViaSat equipment than Gogo equipment. The international fleet has slow Panasonic satellite service. Apple Music whitelisting is on ViaSat-equipped planes only.

  • What this means is that the Apple Music streaming service will be offered on Boeing 737s Airbus A321s, and legacy American A319s since those are the planes getting ViaSat internet, many of which already have it.

  • In contrast legacy US Airways A319s and A320s get Gogo’s 2Ku satellite internet and will not have this service, and American’s 757s and widebodies will not have this service either.

American has been rolling out live TV across its fleet though streaming movies tend to be older content and don’t match what’s offered through seat back video screens — that American is moving away from. They also walked away from their announced promise of free texting.

I really do value the functional internet American is rolling out quickly across its domestic narrowbody fleet. Here they’re competitive with Delta, and both are legions ahead of United whose internet rarely works in my experience.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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Comments

  1. AA’s streaming content is virtually the same as their seatback and has more choice then DL. Also, AA walked away from fee texting because so few people used it in the trails. My experience with DL is also few if any people use the feature, lots of money for little return. The AA live TV is AWESOME! and can’t wait for more power and the tablet holders to be installed.

  2. @Sun Viking 82 –

    They aren’t even allowed to show a lot of the newer content through streaming. But why are you so adverse to giving your fellow customers choices like seatback, using their own devices, and free texting?

    It isn’t your job as a customer to care about how much something costs a business. Rather it’s the business’s job to figure out how to provide the best service at a price customers will pay. You get to choose to pay whatever price the business sets or not. In spite of all these “high costs” you are s concerned about, Delta is much more profitable than AA. I wonder why.

  3. Love this! As an Apple Music subscriber I think this will be really useful. More so than in flight texting with Delta. Also disagree with the assessment that “you’re the product, not the customer” as far as Apple Music goes. Certainly the case with Facebook and services like Gmail. Not Apple Music. Can’t label everything bad just because they offer a free trial.

  4. Am I the only one that sees the irony in AA pimping Apple products so that Apple can spend most of it’s corporate travel money on United flights?

  5. 1) You can already download your playlists on spotify so no need for this

    2) I was on a JFK-LAX flight on the A321T and the wifi was so slow, and super spotty.

    3) You have a IFE but you cannot watch live TV on the IFE, only on the app which is kinda stupid since I want to watch live TV on the IFE not on my phone!

  6. Why does American think free Apple music is important? It is hype with no substance. Why don’t they listen to customer complaints about their 737 max seats and bathrooms…

  7. Given the way it works, I would guess it’s Apple, not AA, paying for this. But that’s just a guess.

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