I think they gave up on the trains. They must be like "hey, we have no idea what's going on with our trains, let's just buy a telco and see how it goes. If it flops, let's buy some other stuff, say semiconductors, and see how that goes"
They already branched out into mall management(Kallang Wave Mall) anyway, not sure how that is doing though.
Their train punctuality has been dropping consistently since 2010 and hasn't improved yet (at least based on their 2014 annual report). Maybe it has improved since, but I don't like it when they haven't addressed a problem (not talking about 100%, just improvement) and move on to another thing. It makes me start to wonder if they actually know what they are doing, especially when they start diversifying into businesses that they have no expertise in.
What is the fuss all about? Look at the share price of SMRT, it rallied when the news broke out. The shareholders are cheering. SMRT share price has not been able to perform since the breakdown saga began some times ago, so in order to have the deadlock broken, they have to look into other businesses or areas.