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Mobilizing the Sky: AT&T Building 4G LTE In-Flight Connectivity Service
|By Business Wire
|April 28, 2014 04:10 PM EDT
today announced plans to launch a high-speed 4G LTE-based in-flight
connectivity service for airlines and passengers in commercial, business
and general aviation. The service, planned to be available as soon as
late 2015, will be capable of providing in-flight broadband for
customers including fast, reliable Wi-Fi and onboard entertainment.
Following launch, aviation customers can also expect improved
connectivity solutions such as cockpit communications, maintenance
operations and crew services.
To deliver this new service, AT&T plans to build an innovative
air-to-ground network in the continental United States, based on global
4G LTE standards, to provide fast speeds and efficient utilization of
spectrum already owned by AT&T. As the architect and operator of the
nation’s most reliable 4G LTE network**, AT&T has the expertise,
spectrum and financial strength to transform airborne connectivity.
“Everyone wants access to high-speed, reliable mobile Internet wherever
they are, including at 35,000 feet,” said John Stankey, Chief Strategy
Officer at AT&T. “We are building on AT&T’s significant strengths to
develop in-flight connectivity technology unlike any other that exists
today, based on 4G LTE standards. We believe this will enable airlines
and passengers to benefit from reliable high speeds and a better
experience. We expect this service to transform connectivity in the
aviation industry – we are truly mobilizing the sky.”
Honeywell, an aerospace industry leader, recently issued its Wireless
Connectivity Survey indicating that in-flight Wi-Fi currently causes
frustrations for nearly nine in 10 users worldwide, most often due to
inconsistent or slow connections. AT&T plans to work with Honeywell to
provide hardware and service capabilities to deliver the in-flight
connectivity solution. Along with Honeywell’s expertise, AT&T’s
technical strength and scale in building networks and managing their
evolutions provide a unique opportunity to change the way passengers and
airlines connect to the mobile Internet. With AT&T’s planned new
network, passengers would gain the reliability they have long hoped for
in the sky – for browsing the Internet, checking email, keeping in touch
with friends and family through social networking and messaging
services, and increasing business productivity. AT&T’s in-flight
connectivity also offers the potential for improved communications
between the plane and the ground through transmission of real-time
aircraft data for optimizing, monitoring and evolving airlines’
In-flight connectivity is a natural fit for AT&T, which over the past
six years (2008 to 2013) has invested more than $140 billion into its
wireless and wireline networks, when you combine capital investment and
acquisitions of spectrum and wireless operations, and already operates
the nation’s most reliable 4G LTE network. AT&T has more than 116
million wireless subscribers, more than 16.5 million total broadband
subscribers and serves many of the world’s largest corporations,
including all of the Fortune 1000. AT&T is a leader in connected devices
and continues to win awards for its wireless and wireline services,
while also continuing to innovate with its recent launches of its
Connected Car platform and Drive Studio, and introduction of AT&T U-verse®
with GigaPowerSM in select U.S. cities.
AT&T sees an opportunity to deliver an innovative and high-performing
in-flight connectivity and entertainment service, and will build on
existing relationships within the aviation industry to deliver a better
customer experience than what is available from others today. AT&T plans
for its in-flight connectivity service to support both business aviation
and commercial airline customers from day one of the service launch.
AT&T will provide information on pricing and availability prior to
AT&T does not expect additional capital expenditures required for this
initiative to be material, nor will it have any impact on the company’s
previously-announced financial guidance.
*AT&T products and services are provided or offered by subsidiaries
and affiliates of AT&T Inc. under the AT&T brand and not by AT&T Inc.
**Reliability claim based on data transfer completion rates on
nationwide 4G LTE networks. 4G LTE availability varies.
AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T)
is a premier communications holding company and one of the most honored
companies in the world. Its subsidiaries and affiliates – AT&T operating
companies – are the providers of AT&T services in the United States and
internationally. With a powerful array of network resources that
includes the nation’s most reliable 4G
LTE network, AT&T is a leading provider of wireless, Wi-Fi, high
speed Internet, voice and cloud-based services. A leader in mobile
Internet, AT&T also offers the best wireless
coverage worldwide of any U.S. carrier, offering the most wireless
phones that work in the most countries. It also offers advanced TV
service with the AT&T
U-verse® brand. The company’s suite of IP-based business
communications services is one of the most advanced in the world.
Reliability claim based on data transfer completion rates on nationwide
4G LTE networks. 4G LTE availability varies.
Additional information about AT&T Inc. and the products and services
provided by AT&T subsidiaries and affiliates is available at http://about.att.com
or follow our news on Twitter at @ATT, on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/att
and YouTube at http://www.youtube.com/att.
© 2014 AT&T Intellectual Property. All rights reserved. AT&T,
the AT&T logo and all other marks contained herein are trademarks of
AT&T Intellectual Property and/or AT&T affiliated companies. All other
marks contained herein are the property of their respective owners.
Cautionary Language Concerning Forward-Looking Statements
Information set forth in this news release contains financial
estimates and other forward-looking statements that are subject to risks
and uncertainties, and actual results may differ materially. A
discussion of factors that may affect future results is contained in
AT&T's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. AT&T
disclaims any obligation to update or revise statements contained in
this news release based on new information or otherwise.
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