Live inflight television does not make economic sense for an ultra-low-cost carrier, says the head of Indigo Partners, the firm poised to acquire Denver-based Frontier Airlines.
“It is difficult in today’s world to economically justify live TV. We will take a hard look at that,” William Franke, Indigo’s managing partner, tells Flightglobal.
Indigo, which agreed to purchase Frontier from Republic Airways Holdings for $145 million, has a plan to continue converting the airline into an ultra-low-cost carrier.
The deal was announced on 1 October and could close in December, says Republic.
Denver-based Frontier’s aircraft have seat-back video screens with access to 30 channels of television from provider DirecTV. JetBlue's subsidiary LiveTV developed the IFE system.
The two other primary US ultra-low-cost carriers, Spirit Airlines and Allegiant Air, do not have in-flight entertainment.
Indigo was the largest holder of Spirit Airlines’ shares before it began selling its stake in July.