JetBlue’s LiveTV Buying Verizon’s Airfone For In-Flight Internet

JetBlue’s LiveTV unit, which offers in-flight TV and messaging services, is buying Verizon’s (NYSE: VZ) Airfone, an air-to-ground telecom network, in a deal WSJ (via Reuters) says is to boost its on-board internet and email offering. No purchase price was given. JetBlue took control of LiveTV in 2002 and it now shows DirecTV (NYSE: DTV), Bell ExpressVu, Foxtel and Austar channels on around seven airlines. There’s also BlackBerry messaging and Yahoo (NSDQ: YHOO) Mail but, despite the launch on on-board WiFi in December, JetBlue still advises: “In order to maintain optimal bandwidth performance, attachments and internet browsing should be avoided.” Verizon had wanted to offload Airfone for some time, and the continuation of the unit had hinged on finding a buyer.