Ina Fried

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Best Buy Killing Connect, Its Mobile Broadband Service, Leaving 11,000 Customers up for Grabs

Best Buy confirmed on Thursday that it is killing off Connect, the company’s private label mobile broadband service.

The service will “suspend operations” on June 1 (Best Buy initially said June 20); existing customers will be given the opportunity, where possible, to transfer their service to a different mobile broadband provider or given a gift card to purchase a new broadband device.

Best Buy had managed to sign up 11,000 customers but decided having its own brand of mobile broadband didn’t fit with its newly re-evaluated priorities. Best Buy sold prepaid USB dongles and hotspots as well as mobile-connected laptops.

“We have decided to exit this business after re-evaluating the priorities of the newly formed Connectivity Business Group, determining that we can achieve greater growth and customer satisfaction by delivering mobile broadband support in ways other than an exclusive Best Buy branded service,” a Best Buy spokesperson told AllThingsD. “Nevertheless, Best Buy Connect provided us lasting insight into delivering mobile broadband solutions, and we intend to apply this experience to our distinctive connectivity value proposition going forward.”

Best Buy launched Connect in 2010.

The impending demise of Connect was reported earlier by Engadget.

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The problem with the Billionaire Savior phase of the newspaper collapse has always been that billionaires don’t tend to like the kind of authority-questioning journalism that upsets the status quo.

— Ryan Chittum, writing in the Columbia Journalism Review about the promise of Pierre Omidyar’s new media venture with Glenn Greenwald