Airbus, Delta, telecom companies form alliance for in-flight internet

FILE PHOTO: Delta planes line up at their gates while on the tarmac of Salt Lake City International Airport in Utah September 28, 2013. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson/File Photo

(Reuters) - European planemaker Airbus SE and U.S.-based Delta Air Lines Inc have formed an alliance with U.S. wireless carrier Sprint Corp, satellite startup OneWeb backed by Japan’s SoftBank, and India’s Bharti Airtel Ltd to develop in-flight 5G services, the companies said.

The alliance, referred to as “Seamless Air Alliance,” aims to let mobile operators provide services to airline customers through satellite technology, the companies said in a statement.

Financial terms of the arrangement were not disclosed.

Sprint will be launching its 5G network next year, the company’s Chief Commercial Officer Dow Draper said on Monday.

Delta said Gogo, its existing partner and in-flight connectivity provider, will also join the alliance.

Reporting by Kanishka Singh in Bengaluru; Editing by Gopakumar Warrier