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Boeing partners with three airlines for e-mail in the sky


June 13, 2001

SEATTLE (AP) — Travelers on United, Delta and American airlines will soon be able to check e-mail, surf the Internet and maybe even watch television, under an agreement announced Wednesday with Boeing Co.

The three airlines have entered into a joint venture with Connexion by Boeing, an arm of the aerospace giant aimed at providing in-flight high-speed Internet access.

The service will be jointly owned, with Boeing as the majority shareholder, and will retain the name Connexion.

The companies said they plan to install the broadband access into 1,500 airplanes, with availability beginning in the second half of 2002. The connections will cost passengers around $20 an hour.

"There currently is no service comparable to this in the market," said Larry DeShon, senior vice president of marketing for United.

Financial terms were not disclosed. Connexion by Boeing President Scott Carson said the large scope of the installations will mean the system can be "designed and developed for reasonable costs."

James Beer, American Airlines' vice president of corporate development, said passengers have asked for fast Internet connections while on board.

"They want to stay as productive in flight as they are in their offices," Beer said. "Imagine conducting an entire e-mail marketing campaign from 39,000 feet."

On the Net:

Connexion by Boeing: www.boeing.com/connexion

American Airlines: http://www.aa.com

Delta Air Lines: http://www.delta.com

United Airlines: http://www.united.com

Copyright 2001 Associated Press


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