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The Wall Street Journal: New push to bring better, faster internet access to airplanes

Airbus SE AIR, +0.61% , Delta Air Lines Inc. DAL, +1.73% , Sprint Corp. S, +1.34% and two U.S. satellite-services providers have kicked off an initiative to enhance Internet access on airliners, inviting other companies to join voluntary efforts to upgrade global standards for airborne connectivity.

The concept, still in its early stages, likely will require time to gain traction and develop necessary hardware and software changes. It also hinges on technical approvals from government regulators and aviation groups, along with overcoming traditional rivalries between wireless and satellite-services companies.

But if enough carriers, plane makers, communications providers and equipment suppliers eventually sign on, it could usher in an entirely new approach to airborne connectivity: faster speeds plus an improved user experience because passengers wouldn’t have to pay separately for broadband services on board.

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