U.S. operator AT&T has abandoned plans announced last spring to launch internet service on commercial flights, instead intending to focus on international expansion and video offerings. “After a thorough review of our investment portfolio, the company decided to no longer pursue entry into the in-flight connectivity industry. We are focusing our capital on transformative investments, such as international and video,” said AT&T spokesman Fletcher Cook.
Last week the operator proposed to buy Mexican operator Iusacell for US $1.7 billion, which comes on the heels of its US $48.5 billion offer for DirecTV in May (regulatory approval is pending). In light of such massive potential investments, in-flight connectivity has apparently had to fall by the wayside. While in-flight service appeared to be a coming trend, it clearly takes a back seat to expansion plans that would increase the operator’s revenue from services that customers in new markets would use daily rather than only while traveling.