What do you do when terrestrial airwaves are crowding your profit potential? Take to the skies. That's what DISH Network (NASDAQ:DISH) did when it inked a deal with Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV), Motley Fool contributor Tim Beyers says in the following video.
The two are providing free Wi-Fi to Southwest passengers who wish to watch TV on an iPad or iPhone while in flight. Use other services, such as email, and it'll still cost you $8 for the trip. More than 400 Southwest planes are equipped to offer Wi-Fi service as of this writing. Travelers may be inclined to pay up for full access after taking advantage of DISH's lead-in, Tim says.
Either way, the deal comes at a good time for Southwest. Revenue growth has slowed to just 1.1% over the trailing 12 months as load factor (i.e., the percentage of all seats filled during flights) persists at about 80%. Full aircraft won't necessarily drive revenue as much as executives would like. Growth is going to have to come from new services, such as onboard Wi-Fi.
Do you agree? Have you tried free Wi-Fi on Southwest? Leave a comment to let us know what you think of the service and where you stand on both stocks right now.