American Airlines Sues Its WiFi Provider

It thinks Gogo's service is too limited
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 17, 2016 8:40 AM CST
American Airlines Sues Its WiFi Provider
A passenger talks on the phone as American Airlines jets sit parked at their gates at Washington's Ronald Reagan National Airport.   (AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File)

If you've flown American Airlines of late and haven't been happy with the WiFi service, you're not alone: The airline itself feels the same way and has gone to court to get out of its contract with provider Gogo, reports the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. The airline says the contract allows it to opt out if a better service comes along, and it's trying to exercise that clause. "Alternative service providers are offering faster, more reliable, and less expensive satellite-based Wi-Fi services to airlines like United, Southwest, JetBlue, and Virgin America," the airline argues in the lawsuit, per Wired.

Specifically, the airline cites ViaSat and says Gogo's early-generation system is too limited in comparison. For one thing, American passengers can't use WiFi when planes are below 10,000 feet, notes Wired. "Nearly one in five customers have switched from a preferred airline to another carrier because of better (WiFi) offerings," says American. Gogo is contesting the airline's attempt to dump the contract and will submit a new proposal centering on its satellite technology, called 2Ku. (More American Airlines stories.)

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