American Airlines Levels Lawsuit Against Gogo
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You know that in-flight Wi-Fi is painfully slow. We know in-flight Wi-Fi is painfully slow. American Airlines knows in-flight Wi-Fi is painfully slow. The only difference is the airline is now doing something about the lag.
According to a report from the Fort Worth Star-Telegram’s Andrea Ahles, American Airlines may very well be in the initial throes of changing its in-flight Internet provider, the renowned and much publicized Gogo.
Indeed its very mention is polarizing among traveling circles. Some see it as a necessary and crucial cog for their respective trips, business or otherwise. Others cringe at its mere mention due to what can be seen as painfully slow service.
According to Ahles, American Airlines may have its proverbial out with a new provider American boasts is faster than the increasingly ubiquitous Gogo.
The suit came at the end of last week and maintained ViaSat was a more advantageous provider, which would eventually allow American to break its relationship with its current Internet solution. This would be possible thanks to language in American's contract with Gogo stating it could terminate the agreement if it finds another company offering better service.
Ahles quotes that very lawsuit: “After carefully evaluating the new technology and services in the marketplace, American has decided to exercise its rights under the Agreement and recently notified Gogo that ViaSat offers an in-flight connectivity system that materially improves on Gogo’s air-to-ground system.”
Bloomberg Business’ Sam Grobart wrote back in August about Gogo’s increasing stranglehold on Wi-Fi at 35,000 feet.
Grobart stated at the time, “Since pioneering the in-flight Internet business, Gogo has dominated, commanding about 80 percent of the market.”
Grobart continues, reminding travelers what is at the heart of potential consumer grumbles: “Gogo hasn’t done itself any favors. Steadily increasing fees and deteriorating data speeds have further annoyed already cranky flyers.”
The cries for faster or more cost-friendly service doesn’t just affect Gogo, it immediately hits those airlines that employ its solution on the respective fleet.
READ MORE: How Do We Get Internet At 40,000 Feet?
If there is indeed a more efficient and consumer friendly service available, you can bet that the airlines will jump that figurative ship however they might be able to.
The quick gut reaction is that this could invariably be a great moment for the tech-savvy traveler that absolutely needs Internet on their long flight.
Competition could indeed improve what is being offered in the sky. At the moment, the report states that Gogo’s new proposal to American will revolve around its cutting edge 2Ku service.
Of course, this is hardly going to revolutionize in-flight offerings overnight. However, this could be the blip on the screen that turns the industry back onto the right direction.
More by Gabe Zaldivar
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