Wow! That is a very big move from the airlines, especially with Emirates. Thousands of customers will be unable to fly to the US because this disruption has canceled most of EK’s US routes. I mean, the problem must be pretty serious if all the airlines are canceling flights like this; there is some serious cost with canceling flights like this. It is also interesting that airlines like QR and LX are still flying their B777’s to the US.
Frankly I think it comes down to some questionable decisions and structures within the government. The FAA has been unhappy about this and warning that these impacts would come if this roll out continued as planned, but the FCC controls this and doesn’t answer to the FAA they answer to the public who wants faster and faster connections and unfortunately like almost all parts of the government often to interest groups and lobbyists from cellular companies. They both answer to the White House I guess indirectly but I don’t think there was strong leadership from above these departments to get them to work together on how to actually solve this problem in a productive way for both of their little windows of the world. So both I think basically said no we do what we do and no conclusion was made till it came to a head mere hours before the rollout. I’d be lying if I said I was surprised, but I would certainly expect better from my government. In a certain sense you can’t blame the cell carriers even though people will have a tendency to do that. They were planning to operate (and technically still could, they just delayed the roll out again voluntarily) in bands they were allowed to by the agency responsible for overseeing that all the bands are properly allocated. It’s really just a total mess of departments being in their own little section of the world and not being able to come to a mutual decision.