30.04.12 | Patrick Joly returns to the Advanced Inflight Alliance group
The Advanced Inflight Alliance Group (AIA), the in-flight content expert behind IFE market leaders Inflight Productions and DTI Software, has appointed Patrick Joly as Vice-President Group Strategy Implementation.
After several months as Managing Director of Spafax Interactive, Patrick will be in charge of implementing business strategies across the AIA Group entities, with a particular emphasis on aligning the strategic goals of Inflight Productions and DTI Software.
Patrick previously spent twelve years at DTI Software as Director of Program Management and Vice-President of Customer Care where he implemented the company’s Customer Relations Program and helped acquire a number of DTI’s airline customers.
Louis Bélanger-Martin, CEO of AIA, commented: “We are delighted that Patrick has accepted to return to the helm of AIA. His extensive knowledge of airlines’ in-flight entertainment needs and strategic IFE insight will be a tremendous asset to our Group.”
30.04.12 | Astronics Corporation Announces Multi-Year Agreement with Panasonic Avionics Corporation for Power Solutions
Astronics Corporation (NASDAQ: ATRO), a leader in advanced, high-performance lighting, electrical power, avionics databus interfaces, and automated test systems for the global aerospace and defense industries, today announced that its wholly-owned subsidiary, Astronics Advanced Electronic Systems Corp. (AES), and Panasonic Avionics Corporation (Panasonic) have signed a multi-year Master Supply Agreement (MSA) for Astronics’ world-leading EMPOWER® In-Seat Power Systems that are installed with Panasonic’s In-Flight Entertainment and Connectivity (IFEC) Systems.
Peter J. Gundermann, President and CEO of Astronics Corp., commented, “We have had a long-standing relationship with Panasonic Avionics Corporation and have readily applied our innovation and responsiveness to address the continued technological advancements they have made with their systems. We appreciate the recognition through this contract of our innovative power solutions, high quality products, and reliable customer service.”
Astronics began providing EMPOWER® products to Panasonic in 2005 under various commercial agreements. Since then, the parties have collaborated on the design and development of multiple intelligent power supply systems used to provide power to Personal Electronic Devices (PEDs) such as laptops, as well as the IFE seat back displays and other electronic devices provided by Panasonic in the cabin of commercial air transport aircraft. Such systems assure high reliability and availability of IFE System functionality and allow the passengers to connect their own portable device for work or pleasure.
For more than 15 years, Astronics has developed intelligent power management systems. The patented EMPOWER® System is currently in service with over 150 Airline/OEM customers at more than 500,000 seat locations.
27.04.12 | IFE Services launches new website and social media platforms
Leading in-flight entertainment (IFE) provider, IFE Services, today announced that it has launched a new website and social media platforms.
IFE professionals across the globe can now connect with the company via its website, follow it on Twitter, become a friend on Facebook and view its original production work on YouTube.
The new website includes a raft of innovative features to improve the user experience. Visitors can now view a sample of the content service provider’s (CSP) hottest movies, TV shows and music for enjoyment in-flight. An interactive carousel showcases some of the company’s original production work including safety films, destination and promotional videos, GUIs, pre-recorded announcements (PRAMs) and entertainment guides. The IFE Support Centre is an educational resource designed to help IFE professionals with many of the challenges they face in their day-to-day roles. The website also acts a hub for IFE Services’ social media channels which allow people to connect with the company on a more informal basis.
“Our fresh, modern new website has been designed to give the IFE community a clear understanding of how we can help them,” said Andy McEwan, CEO of IFE Services. “Together with our social media platforms, we are now in a very strong position to engage with the IFE industry on a much more personal and interactive level.”
26.04.12 | GuestLogix Launches Chinese, Japanese and Korean Versions of its Industry-Leading Onboard Retailing Solution
GuestLogix Inc. (TSX:GXI), the leading global provider of onboard retail and payment technology solutions to airlines and the passenger travel industry, today announced the addition of Chinese, Japanese and Korean versions of its industry-leading onboard retailing software to support the Company’s plans for footprint expansion in the Asia-Pacific region. The three language versions are available immediately and are compatible with all GuestLogix’ onboard handheld point-of-sale (POS) devices. The Company has also certified all of its devices to support China UnionPay (CUP) card transactions in addition to other major payment types. GuestLogix will continue to launch other language versions of its software to support its international growth initiatives.
“The Asia-Pacific region, with more than 700 million passenger trips* annually, is a key growth opportunity for GuestLogix,” said Tom Douramakos, President and CEO of GuestLogix. “The three new languages, along with the certification of our POS devices to support China UnionPay cards, place GuestLogix in a prime position to better meet Asian airlines’ immediate in-flight retailing needs. Now, airlines based in China, Japan and Korea can use our solution, the industry’s most powerful and comprehensive onboard retail technology platform, more easily and effectively.”
When it comes to new ancillary revenue opportunities within the cabin, GuestLogix can help Asia-Pacific airlines employ robust onboard retail strategies to increase their revenue, while also enhancing the passenger experience and strengthening overall customer loyalty.
“Providing the Asia-Pacific region with access to a customized onboard retailing solution is essential to expanding our footprint in the region,” said Tony Sit, Senior Vice President and General Manager, GuestLogix Asia-Pacific. “When it comes to selling our technology into the Asian market, GuestLogix has significant competitive advantages. We have a local presence, offer support for multiple languages capability, and have a proven track record in markets such as the United States and Europe.”
GuestLogix will leverage current and new channel partnerships to penetrate the Asia-Pacific market and deploy its enhanced solution onboard airlines in the region. For sales inquiries about GuestLogix’ enhanced onboard retailing technology for Asia-Pacific, please visit www.guestlogix.com .
*Source: ATW World Airline Traffic Results 2010
26.04.12 | Carlisle Interconnect Technologies/Tri-Star Electronics Division Receives Boeing Performance Excellence Award
Carlisle Interconnect Technologies announced today that it’s interconnect division located in El Segundo, CA has been named a recipient of the 2011 Boeing Performance Excellence Award (BPEA) for a third consecutive year, 2009, 2010, and 2011 based on its superior supplier performance. Boeing issues the BPEA annually to recognize those suppliers who have maintained superior quality and delivery performance. Carlisle Interconnect Technologies maintained a Silver composite performance rating from October 1, 2010 through September 30, 2011.
“Carlisle Interconnect Technologies Performance Promise is exceeding our customers’ expectations by developing innovative products that are delivered on time with superior quality and service,” said John Berlin, President of Carlisle Interconnect Technologies.
26.04.12 | IFP launches the world’s first ever inflight entertainment application for KLM
Inflight Productions (IFP), the market-leading inflight service provider specialised in engaging passengers through tailored content, today launched the first-ever application providing passengers with real-time complete listings of all the programming on-board KLM’s intercontinental fleet.
The KLM Movies & More app, which is available to download for free on iTunes, is the first of its kind allowing travellers to plan their long-haul flight schedule ahead of time by accessing listings of KLM’s inflight movies, TV, audio and children’s entertainment prior to boarding. It also provides synopses and film trailer previews to enhance and extend the travel experience.
The app is one of several ground-breaking inflight entertainment projects which London-based Content Service Provider IFP is developing to answer growing demands from airlines to adapt ground-based content solutions for inflight use.
“The development of this unique app, in partnership with our long-standing partner KLM, is another example of the deep knowledge and understanding we have of airlines’ inflight entertainment expectations and the needs of their passengers,” explained Roberts Hunter, CEO of IFP. “We distinguish our services through pioneering solutions which offer ever-engaging and relevant content to flight passengers, closing the gap between ground and air technologies and reshaping the inflight entertainment industry as we know it.”
“With the KLM Movies & More app, we’re taking inflight entertainment to the next level, expanding the reach of our broad IFE offer by making listings accessible to our passengers’ mobile devices. This introduction brings the KLM app suite up to five applications, together increasing brand awareness and above all brand affinity” commented Audrey Zielinski, Manager of Inflight Entertainment at KLM.
KLM Movies & More is available to download from the iTunes app store and through KLM’s website, and is compatible with Apple iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad devices.
26.04.12 | British Airways’ future pilots prepare for take-off
The first-ever British Airways Future Pilot Programme cadets have started their 18-month pilot training course this month.
Only the top three per cent of applicants qualified for the airline’s dedicated training programme, with the successful 95 future pilots fighting off stiff competition from more than 3,500 hopefuls. On completion of their training the newly qualified pilots will be introduced to the British Airways fleet of aircraft, the most diverse of any UK airline, and will begin their flying careers.
The top-flight cadets will start their training, at one of three British Airways approved flight training schools in Oxford, Southampton and Jerez in Spain, between April 2012 and February 2013.
During the initial 16-month period at the flight training schools, students complete their ground theory training, cockpit instrument rating and flight training – flying light aircraft in Spain, New Zealand or Arizona in the US.
The final two months of the programme is completed on British Airways’ multi-million pound simulators at the airline’s flight training centre near Heathrow, where the cadets will learn to maintain British Airways’ high standards.
British Airways’ director of flight operations, Captain Stephen Riley, said: “It’s great to see our Future Pilot Programme come to life.
“With this first group of new pilots entering the airline in 2013 and the second recruitment phase starting later this year, the high levels of skill and service that our customers rightly expect from British Airways’ pilots are assured for years to come.
“We look forward to welcoming them into our fleet of 3,500 pilots.”
24.04.12 | GuestLogix Unveils Second-Generation Onboard Retail Software for the Global Airline Industry
GuestLogix Inc. (TSX: GXI), the leading global provider of onboard retail and payment technology solutions to airlines and the passenger travel industry, today announced an enhanced version of the industry’s most comprehensive and advanced onboard retail software. At the core of this latest release – named OBR Plus – are new warehouse management tools and a sophisticated business intelligence component. The combination of this new functionality will improve how airlines create, manage and control their onboard retail operations and ultimately better monetize the onboard environment.
“By building on our revolutionary software and working closely with our customers throughout the development process, we have designed the most comprehensive and powerful onboard retail solution available today in the travel industry,” said Tom Douramakos, President and CEO of GuestLogix. “With our OBR Plus, we have significantly increased the performance of our onboard retail solution to deliver the ultimate in operational visibility for the global airline industry. Bringing the most advanced technology to market is underscored by our mission to help airlines create more sustainable ancillary revenue streams and increase passenger satisfaction.”
OBR Plus provides airlines with end-to-end management of their onboard retail operations as they continue to take charge of their onboard stores to generate incremental revenue and enhance the passenger experience. The following new modules enable airlines to more easily and conveniently manage their retail operations:
Comprehensive Warehouse Management for Streamlined Store Planning
The new release contains a powerful warehouse management system that includes site definition, product management, vendor management, purchase order processing, transfers between locations, stock control, reorder alerting, equipment management, and packing, dispatch and receiving.
Real-time Inventory Control to Simplify Work Processes
When it comes to managing inventory, OBR Plus features end-to-end reconciliation from the warehouse to the Onboard Store and back to the warehouse to help improve inventory accuracy, simplify work processes and save valuable time and money.
Tax Management Specifically Designed for Travel Operators
OBR Plus delivers a critical tax management tool for the definition and application of value added tax (VAT) and other taxes across geographies.
Robust Business Intelligence Tools for Optimum Onboard Store Performance
The strength of OBR Plus lies in the analytics tool that features executive dashboards to determine key performance metrics through real-time data, drillable reports, and mobile alerts for data delivery – anytime, anywhere.
Other enhancements include stronger user control functions, allowing airlines and other users of the solution such as caterers, duty-free suppliers and other content providers, to access and perform functions specific to their needs. The powerful system requires minimal implementation and further enhances GuestLogix’ competitive edge of being a true technology innovator.
OBR Plus is available immediately for the global airline market. For more information about OBR Plus, or for sales inquiries, please visit www.guestlogix.com.
24.04.12 | KLM 1st to launch IFE app for the iPhone: ‘KLM Movies & more’
The latest box office hits, brilliant music, powerful drama, exotic nature documentaries, and much, much more. Interested in knowing more about the wide range of entertainment available during your KLM flight? KLM is first to launch an IFE app for iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad devices. KLM Movies & more, taking its inflight entertainment to the next level.
The ‘Movies & more’ app offers the opportunity to prepare their flight and to see what types of inflight entertainment KLM offers this month on its widebody fleet. The app contains a full overview of the more than 1000 hours of movies, television programmes and music which are available on board in both World Business Class and Economy Class. Next to this, the app also shows the trailers of the latest movies and shows you each month the highlights via What’s new. The app is available in English and can be downloaded for free from the iTunes app store and through KLM’s website. For Android mobile phones the app will become available as per this Summer.
This unique app has been developed in partnership with KLM’s long standing CSP Inflight Productions.
With the introduction of ‘KLM Movies & more’ the KLM app suite is extended with its 5th app. KLM already has the very popular ‘KLM’ app, the ‘KLM Houses’ app, the ‘KLM Tripshake’ app and the ‘KLM Passport’ app. Together, all these apps increase brand awareness and above all brand affinity. KLM continues to enhance its mobile offering with the release of its latest app.
24.04.12 | British Airways marks 85 years of inflight service
On May 1, 2012, it will be 85 years since the first inflight meal service on a commercial aircraft and food in the air has come a long way since then.
In 1927 Imperial Airways (predecessor to British Airways) introduced the Silverwing branded air service on the London to Paris route. The flight offered the first luxury onboard meal service. A male steward dressed in a smart white tunic served just ten passengers on the flight, which took around two hours.
Onboard was a small cabinet carrying four gills (servings) of whisky, a dozen bottles of lager beer, two siphons of sparkling water and twelve assorted bottles of mineral water. They also carried a packet of sandwiches or biscuits and one or two thermos flasks of hot water, within which the steward made coffee or beef tea to nourish the passengers during the flight. The service represented the height of luxury, up until this time passengers had to fend for themselves, packing home made snacks for the journey.
85 years on British Airways’ cabin crew serve around 100,000 meals a day to customers, often with more than one meal on an individual flight. The airline’s 14,000 crew are trained in the art of premium service. They are taught skills which include how to tell a Merlot from a Shiraz, how to cook the perfect scrambled eggs and how to re-create a five star turndown service.
Bill Francis, British Airways’ head of inflight service, said: “At British Airways we have an incredible history. We’ve developed the service to our customers and even as we’ve grown from small propeller aircraft to 747′s, we’ve managed to maintain the magic that makes flying special.”
The British Airways Heritage Collection opened in November 2011 at British Airways’ head office and is open to members of the public. Information from the collection can also be found online at www.ba.com/heritage.
24.04.12 | Condor to be first customer for new Revenue Integrity solution from Lufthansa Systems
Lufthansa Systems today announced Condor as the launching customer for its new Revenue Integrity solution. This will enable the German airline to significantly reduce the number of blind and duplicate bookings that result in lost sales. With Revenue Integrity, airlines can easily eliminate unproductive bookings from their inventory to ensure their flights are filled to capacity. The system identifies blind and duplicate bookings and frees up the blocked seats for re-sale. In this way, airlines can noticeably boost their revenues and significantly improve their passenger load factor.
Revenue Integrity checks all bookings and requires that agents issue the tickets for these bookings within a defined time frame. The IT solution also detects bookings that include identical flights on multiple days or to nearby airports. These bookings usually do not result in tickets being issued; instead, they block valuable seats and lead to revenue losses. Furthermore, the system can automatically check passenger lists against predefined lists of names in compliance with the immigration regulations of various countries. The third-generation solution meets the growing demands of small and medium-size airlines in particular, allowing them to define rules and control numerous individual actions with the greatest possible precision and flexibility.
“The use of Revenue Integrity has a considerable effect on the economic performance of an airline,” explains Stefan Auerbach, Senior Vice President Airline Solutions at Lufthansa Systems. By cleaning up their reservation data, airlines can release seats for re-sale. “Moreover, carriers save the GDS costs they would have to incur for unproductive bookings. For many airlines, this solution pays for itself within its first year of use. We are therefore delighted that Condor is the first airline to have opted for the new product generation,” says Auerbach.
“This new Revenue Integrity solution is a tool that comprehensively supports our hybrid strategy and ensures clean inventory information throughout the booking process,” says Achim Lameyer, Sales Vice President of Condor.
The Revenue Integrity solution can be integrated with any reservation system and can process inventory data both in real time and in batches. Thanks to its modern architecture and highly standardized components, the solution can be quickly adapted to the individual requirements of various customers.
24.04.12 | JAL Renews Homepage to Reflect Customer Feedback and Improve Usability
Japan Airlines (JAL) renewed its main homepage http://www.jal.co.jp/ on April 19, 2012. JAL’s website, from which customers can purchase tickets online, attracts more than 350,000 viewers per day on average, ranging from first-time users to regular visitors such as JAL Mileage Bank (JMB) members.
In the latest update to the functionality and aesthetics of the website, 3 years since the last revamp, JAL incorporated feedback from many frequent users as well as findings from surveys to improve usability and clarity for as many customer profiles as possible.
In addition to creating an overall larger layout with bigger font size for easy-reading, a new site index has been added at the bottom of the page for better navigation around the website. Customers can now also more easily stay updated with the latest JAL news and identify attractive promotions highlighted on a banner which customers can click to access the respective campaign microsites.
Simultaneously, JAL’s Japanese version corporate website http://www.jal.com/ja/ was also upgraded to provide customers with comprehensive information that is now easier to locate. The content has also been enhanced such as with the new section about the JAL Brand which features a unique collection of employees’ description of the company in their own words, offering readers an insight into JAL from the perspectives of its staff from various divisions.
23.04.12 | Ultra Electronics Controls joins Boeing’s ‘Dream Tour’ at London Heathrow
Ultra Electronics Controls, based in Greenford, UK, joined Boeing at London’s Heathrow Airport today (23 April) for the latest stop of the 787 Dreamliner aircraft’s worldwide ‘Dream Tour.’ The 787 is currently travelling the globe to allow Boeing’s partners and customers to experience the revolutionary technology and passenger innovation on board the aircraft.
Controls is partnered with GKN Aerospace for the design, manufacture and delivery of the innovative Wing Ice Protection System on the 787, the first of its kind solution for wing de-icing. To save weight and to make the aircraft more fuel efficient, Boeing decided to incorporate a pioneering system that used electrically powered heater mats to provide ice protection of the wings. By teaming with GKN Aerospace, Ultra was able to work with Boeing to provide such a system.
Kim Wrighton, Managing Director of Controls, commented: “Ultra, together with our teaming partner GKN Aerospace, is proud to be the supplier of the innovative ice protection system for the 787 wings. We are equally proud to say that we are the only company in the world to have an electro-thermal ice protection system certified for use on a large passenger jet. We look forward to working with Boeing as the 787 production rate increases and to supporting the aircraft in service in the years ahead.”
23.04.12 | Astronics Corporation Announces First Quarter 2012 Financial Results Conference Call and Webcast
Astronics Corporation (NASDAQ: ATRO), a leader in advanced, high-performance lighting, electrical power, avionics databus interfaces and automated test systems for the global aerospace and defense industries, announced today that it will release its first quarter 2012 financial results before the opening of financial markets on Tuesday, May 1, 2012, followed by a conference call and webcast at 11:00 a.m. ET.
During the call and webcast, Peter J. Gundermann, President and CEO, and David C. Burney, Executive Vice President and CFO, will review the financial and operating results for the quarter and discuss Astronics’ corporate strategies and outlook. A question-and-answer session will follow.
The conference call can be accessed by dialing (201) 689-8562. The listen-only audio webcast can be monitored at www.Astronics.com.
A telephonic replay will be available from 2:00 p.m. ET the day of the call through Tuesday, May 8, 2012. To listen to the archived call, dial (858) 384-5517 and enter conference ID number 392763. Alternatively, the archive of the webcast will be available on the Company’s website at www.Astronics.com. A transcript will also be posted to the Company’s website, once available.
22.04.12 | Japan Airlines Launched First-Ever Nonstop Flight Between Boston and Asia; Debuted Scheduled 787 Dreamliner Service to the United States
Japan Airlines (JAL) yesterday demonstrated the strategic use of the state-of-the-art Boeing 787 Dreamliner with the official launch of the first ever nonstop service between Boston Logan and Tokyo, Narita.
JAL008 took off from Tokyo, Narita and landed at Boston Logan yesterday where passengers were welcomed by JAL Chairman, Masaru Onishi, JAL Senior Vice President for the Americas, Hiroyuki Hioka, and Massport Director of Aviation, Ed Freni. Lexington Minutemen in traditional uniform were drumming up excitement as customers began arriving for the first flight to Japan and the aircraft has now departed from Boston Logan as JAL007 bound for Tokyo, Narita, accomplishing JAL’s maiden revenue round-trip flights of the super-efficient, GEnx-powered Dreamliner. This was at the same time, the debut of the world’s newest aircraft type in the United States.
“By deploying the 787 Dreamliner on long-haul routes to markets that can garner substantial travel demand such as Boston, JAL is making best use of the aircraft’s long-range capability, appropriate capacity, and its economic performance,” said JAL President Yoshiharu Ueki at the departure gate ceremony of JAL008 in Narita yesterday to celebrate this landmark event for JAL, Boeing, and Massachusetts Port Authority (Massport). “We are very happy to have such strong support from the Boston community, Massport, Boeing, and joint business partner American Airlines, to establish this direct link between Boston and Tokyo never-before available.”
“Last year, more than 400,000 people flew from Boston Logan to Asia and either ended their trip in Tokyo or continued on to China, Southeast Asia or India,” said David Mackey, Interim CEO of the Massachusetts Port Authority, which owns and operates Boston Logan International Airport. “This nonstop service connecting New England to Japan is historic and will help businesses prosper, open up new leisure destinations, and bring nations closer together.”
“We are honored to see the 787 Dreamliner begin its first commercial service to the U.S. with the launch of JAL’s Tokyo to Boston route,” said Boeing Japan president Mike Denton, who was on the flight. “The 787 brings new levels of flexibility to airlines in their network development, and this is exactly the kind of long-haul point-to-point route the 787 was designed to fly. Congratulations to JAL and all their passengers participating in this exciting, pioneering flight.”
The new transpacific service is currently the tenth joint business route offered with fellow oneworld alliance member American Airlines.
“We look forward to working with our joint business partner, Japan Airlines, in making this route a success,” said John Bowers, American’s Managing Director – Strategic Alliances, Asia Pacific. “This is an exciting new route that will benefit our customers traveling to the U.S. East Coast.”
Boston is the seventh gateway in JAL’s North American network. With JAL’s codeshare arrangements with American Airlines as well as JetBlue Airways, customers can enjoy more convenient connections especially up and down the east coast. Beyond Japan, customers can connect to and from major Asian cities throughout JAL’s extensive network at Tokyo, Narita.
JAL’s 787 Dreamliner is currently fitted with 42 seats in business, featuring the Executive Class JAL SHELL FLAT NEO seats that are 5 cm (2 inches) wider (than the seats now fitted on JAL’s Boeing 777s) in a 2-2-2 configuration, and 144 in Economy Class with 2 cm (0.8 inches) wider space than current seats and arranged in a 2-4-2 configuration. JAL has on order a total of 45 Boeing 787 Dreamliners.
Some highlights of the revolutionary aircraft include larger windows with electronically dimmable shades, as well as higher ceilings, lower cabin pressure and better humidity for a noticeably more comfortable in-flight experience. JAL’s hospitality is reflected in customer-contact points throughout the cabin and even in the work space for cabin attendants such as the kitchen equipment in the galley. Utilizing the LED lights in the Dreamliner, JAL created an original cabin lighting design to enhance the ambience onboard with a sense of the four seasons in Japan, such as pink hues of cherry blossoms in spring, or sky blue in the summer months of July and August. The lighting also adapts at various timings during the flight, to make the environment more conducive during meal service and for resting or waking up.
20.04.12 | Mezzo launches unique range of cases for Samsung Galaxy Tabs
Mezzo is pleased to announce the launch of a new range of Corlan cases. The cases have been commissioned and designed specifically to fit the range of Samsung Galaxy tablets, which Mezzo provides to airlines and other travel operators.
Due to its Gold Partner membership of the Samsung Enterprise Alliance Program (SEAP), Mezzo has been able to work closely with Samsung to develop the range of cases. The Samsung Enterprise Research Institute (SERI) in the UK provided collaborative assistance in the initial development stages of the Mezzo solution. The patent-pending cases are manufactured exclusively for Mezzo by Iota Sigma, a company in Newport, Wales. In a nod to both their Welsh heritage and their function, the cases have been named “Corlan” as it is the Welsh word for “fold”.
Says Dave Sampson, Mezzo CEO, “Samsung tablets are ideal for deployment with passengers, either unconnected or in Wi-Fi networked areas, and when combined with the new Mezzo Corlan case, those passengers get an even better entertainment, shopping, advertising or interactive experience.”
The external Corlan case acts as a screen cover to protect against scratching during transport and has been approved by Hollywood studios’ security teams for its ability to withstand abuse, and in particular hacking or interference with the software and content.
With three SD cards mounted in a caddy and integrated into the case, the limited memory capacity issue that faces consumer off the shelf tablets is negated. The SD memory cards are quick and easy to remove for upgrading, changing the content or for downloading captured data.
The cases have an integral stand that gives the user two options: a fully variable viewing angle; and a rigid position, suitable for easy typing and data entry or game play.
For more information, visit www.mezzoglobal.com or contact Dave Sampson – email: firstname.lastname@example.org, mobile: +44 (0) 7866 764624, office: +44 (0) 20 85 63 27 25.
20.04.12 | British Airways says bmi purchase brings customer benefits
It’s business as usual at bmi. Plan to operate bmi mainline’s summer schedule. It’s good news for customers. A consultation is under way with trade unions on the proposed integration of bmi into British Airways. Once that consultation is complete we will communicate further details about out proposed integration of bmi into British Airways.
We are working on a Diamond Club partnership and will communicate to members today. Customers will have access to more destinations, better frequencies and more seats, following completion today of the acquisition of bmi by British Airways’ owner, IAG.
Keith Williams, British Airways’ CEO, said: “It’s business as usual for both bmi mainline and British Airways customers. We plan to operate bmi’s Heathrow summer schedule, so customers can continue to book with confidence.
“We are proposing to integrate bmi into British Airways, subject to the outcome of a consultation with staff and unions, which began last week. We aim to make this transition as smooth as possible and we’ll keep customers up to date with our progress.
“We’re already looking at options for exciting new destinations, particularly in Asia and we’re hoping to announce a new route soon.”
The latest information will be available on www.ba.com/bmi and www.flybmi.com during the transition.
From today bmi mainline flights will begin to be sold through British Airways, as well as through bmi.
19.04.12 | China Travel Retail appoints the Moodie Report as moderators for inaugural event in Shanghai
Today, China Travel Retail (CTR), the most focused networking event for travel retail brands, concessionaires and retailers targeting Chinese travellers, has announced that travel retail’s leading publication, The Moodie Report, will be moderating the inaugural master classes and exhibition in Shanghai on 24th to 26th July, 2012.In addition to their role as moderator, The Moodie Report will also be the official Media Partner for the event. The new Moodie Report China will be distributed at the event, and will include articles and opinion pieces from the speakers and exhibitors.
“We are pleased to support China’s burgeoning travel retail industry in every way and so we are delighted to moderate the China Travel Retail event,” said The Moodie Report Founder & Chairman Martin Moodie, who together with his Deputy Publisher Dermot Davitt, will co-facilitate proceedings. “We helped run the first-ever China Travel Retail Summit back in 2002, which still ranks as one of the most memorable conferences in travel retail history. It’s good to be back.”
The Moodie Report China, which makes its debut this month as an e-Zine, will be launched officially at the event, focusing not only on China’s travel retail industry, but also the Chinese travelling shopper abroad. A special print version will be handed to delegates and exhibitors in their welcome pack on top of the global digital distribution.
“Through Martin and Dermot, The Moodie Report have been involved for many years with our Airline Retail Conferences in Europe and Asia, as well as running the acclaimed Trinity Forum and MEDFA conferences nd we are delighted that they will be supporting the China Travel Retail event.” added Jeffrey O’Rourke, Chief Executive of Ink. “There is tremendous demand to maximise the potential of the Chinese market, and we are truly excited about the future of this event.”
Nick Tan, President of GIS Events, added “Martin and Dermot are well-known industry figures in China as well as in the West and The Moodie Report enjoys great respect in China. The exhibition is selling out quickly and the conference programme will feature leading concessionaires and retailers in the Chinese market. With our experience producing events that appeal to Chinese executives and business practice, we are certain that we, CTR, will help bridge the gap between East and West.”
The event and exhibition will take place at the prestigious Marriott City Centre in Shanghai and will showcase best practices both domestically inside China at Chinese airports and airlines, at sea, as well as how companies are successfully selling to Chinese consumers travelling overseas.
18.04.12 | Manhattan’s New York YOTEL Provides In-Room microFIDSTM Flight Information for Guests
ARINC Incorporated today announced that the flagship YOTEL New York hotel, located on 10th Ave. and W42nd St. in Times Square West, has become the first hospitality provider to offer ARINC’s microFIDS airline flight information service to its guests via their in-cabin flat screen TVs.
ARINC and TTI Technologies International collaborated to bring flight information from JFK, LaGuardia and Newark airports to guest TVs. ARINC is a leading IT provider for aviation, and TTI is a leader in guest management systems for the hospitality industry.
“YOTEL loves technology that is effective, simple and easy to use, and microFIDS fits perfectly into that philosophy,” says Geoffrey A. Mills, Managing Director at YOTEL New York. “It puts the convenience of flight information right in the guest’s cabin, so they can adjust to any schedule changes in the comfort of one of our cabins.
ARINC microFIDS information enables customers to change or amend their hotel reservation when flights are cancelled or delayed. “With the addition of ARINC iSMART messaging, the system can deliver even more value,” says Chris Forrest, Managing Director of ARINC Managed Services. “It’s easy to add weather, in-hotel promotions, and paid third-party advertising—another opportunity to drive incremental revenue.”
The compact wireless ARINC microFIDS technology is easily deployed in hotels, car rental facilities, on shuttle buses, and in airport concession or passenger areas where conventional flight information displays aren’t feasible.
YOTEL was created by YO! founder Simon Woodroffe and YOTEL CEO Gerard Greene. The idea was conceived by Simon after he was upgraded to first class on a flight. They decided to translate the language of luxury airline travel and Japanese capsule hotel to a small but luxurious cabin. YOTEL launched as a revolutionary hotel concept in 2007, with its first location inside London’s Gatwick South terminal, followed quickly by its second location inside London’s Heathrow Airport Terminal 4, and its first in the airside transit area at Schiphol Airport, Amsterdam. YOTEL’s first city centre location just 2 blocks west of Times Square opened in June 2011, and features 669 stylish cabins and 20,000 square feet of flexible entertainment space.
ARINC Managed Services (AMS) is the global IT support and service subsidiary of ARINC Incorporated, providing innovative IT managed services that are customer-focused and competitively priced.
TTI has been delivering innovative solutions since 1991 serving hotels, resorts, hostels, airports and retailers. TTI’s technology includes ID Scanners, Self-Service Business Centers and Concierge Kiosks, Luggage Storage Solutions, ATMs, and more. With an international headquarters in New York City and satellite offices in Phoenix, San Francisco, Seattle, Boston, Ft. Lauderdale, and Mumbai, TTI is well equipped to anticipate and deliver exceptional service.
ARINC Incorporated, a portfolio company of The Carlyle Group , provides communications, engineering and integration solutions for commercial, defense and government customers worldwide. Headquartered in Annapolis, Maryland with regional headquarters in London and Singapore, ARINC is ISO 9001:2008 and AS9100 certified.
17.04.12 | Thales and Qatar Airways Open New Technical Laboratory at Qatar Science & Technology Park
Thales, a leader in In-Flight Entertainment and Connectivity (IFEC) systems and Qatar Airways jointly announced the grand opening of a new technology research, development and training center at the prestigious Qatar Science & Technology Park (QSTP).
The investment in Qatar Science & Technology Park is further testament to Thales’ commitment to develop a strong local presence in Qatar. Under the official name, Thales QSTP-LLC, this technical laboratory currently houses state-of-the-art IFEC equipment that supports software and application prototyping, content integration, system level testing and training.
In its first phase of development, the Thales QSTP-LLC has been established in collaboration with Qatar Airways. Together, Thales and Qatar Airways will establish a Joint Innovation and Technology Project (JITP)that will ensure that their strong partnership continues to push boundaries and deliver on innovation year after year.
Over the past several years, Qatar Airways selected the Thales TopSeries System for its large fleet of Airbus aircraft including A319, A320, A321, A350 and A380 planes. The Thales system will also install on the airline’s fleet of B787 aircraft which includes SwiftBroadband cabin connectivity for access to current news, sports, social networks and other mobile applications. “This grand opening in Doha symbolizes our deep commitment to Qatar Airways, and I am confident that the collective experience and talent of our organizations will play a significant part in the future of onboard systems and services,” said Alan Pellegrini, CEO Thales In-Flight Entertainment and Connectivity Systems.
Addressing guests at the official opening, Qatar Airways Chief Executive Officer Akbar Al Baker said that the airline was at the forefront of developing pioneering products for its passengers and in-flight entertainment was no exception.
“Qatar Airways always works closely with its partners to provide the best and take innovation to new levels to its valued customers” he said.
“We are delighted to see Thales choose to open this new training centre here in Qatar helping to further strengthen the already strong partnership that exists between the two companies.
“The new centre will ensure development and implementation needs of Qatar Airways will be met quicker with improved timelines for content updates on our aircraft.”
Al Baker added: “IFE today plays a crucial role in a passenger’s decision making process when choosing which airline to fly with. 15 years ago IFE played a very small part of an airline’s product offering.
In 2010 and 2011, Thales and Qatar Airways received industry awards for the revolutionary Touch Passenger Media Unit (TouchPMU), a handheld media device that out performs all in-seat handheld IFEC technologies and allows passengers to multi-task just as they do on the ground. The TouchPMU was the first innovation conceived and developed by Thales and Qatar Airways and will take flight later this year.
Taking into account the broad portfolio of activities within the Thales group and the synergies in terms of technologies and processes, the future will hold further exceptional developments within QSTP, as Thales will seek to expand the laboratory’s activities to encompass a wide spectrum of domains in support of its operations in the region. Thales is currently pursuing high profile opportunities in Qatar in the fields of defence, urban transportation, security, maritime, communications, and network applications.
Commenting on the launch, Dr. Amir H. Al Saadi, Research Advisor, Qatar Foundation said, “ Qatar Science & Technology Park along with its tenants have together committed to funding new ventures, creating intellectual property, enhancing technology management skills and developing innovative new products in line with the national vision. Thales will surely be able to develop and deliver technology developments that will serve not only the community but the wider region as well.
17.04.12 | JAL Strengthens US East Coast Network with New JetBlue Airways Codeshare Agreement
Japan Airlines (JAL) and JetBlue Airways have reached a codeshare agreement that will place “JL” flight indicators on select JetBlue-operated flights that connect New York and Boston with 21 destinations in the US from April 22, 2012. Sales and reservations begin from April 18, 2012.
JetBlue is a value airline in the US known for its quality in customer service, featuring leather seats, one of the widest seat pitches in economy class, free in-flight entertainment at every seatback, and unlimited snacks and drinks. Under the new codeshare agreement, customers can more easily connect between JAL’s daily Tokyo, Narita service and US domestic cities such as New Orleans, LA; Portland, ME; Rochester and Syracuse, NY; and Washington, DC (Dulles), at JetBlue’s home base at John F. Kennedy in New York.
Via Boston Logan International Airport – JetBlue’s focus city and where it is the largest airline, the codeshare arrangement will allow customers to smoothly transfer between JAL’s latest nonstop flights to and from Tokyo, Narita, and such US destinations as Buffalo, NY; Baltimore, MD; Fort Lauderdale, Fort Myers, Jacksonville, Orlando, Tampa and West Palm Beach, FL.
The start of the new codeshare flights will coincide with JAL’s launch of the brand new Tokyo (Narita) = Boston route using the super-efficient Boeing 787 Dreamliner on April 22. This first ever nonstop service between New England and Asia is a transpacific joint business route with oneworld alliance partner American Airlines, with whom JAL also has an extensive codeshare agreement. Together with American and JetBlue, JAL will be able to deliver to customers greater conveniences with a more comprehensive network in the east coast of the US.
17.04.12 | Gdansk Lech Walesa Airport Terminal 2 Prepares for EURO 2012 Crowds; ARINC Providing Passenger Check-InTechnology
With tens of thousands of football fans arriving in Poland to attend the EURO 2012™ tournament matches this summer, Gdansk Lech Walesa Airport will be ready to handle its share of the visitors.
The airport recently more than doubled its passenger capacity by increasing airside infrastructure and adding a second passenger terminal. Terminal 2 began operations on Friday, April 6.
To handle the volume of passengers expected from ten airlines operating out of Terminal 2, the airport has chosen vMUSE Enterprise hosted technology from ARINC Incorporated as its common-use passenger check-in and departure solution.
Unlike common-use systems that require costly IT hardware on site, ARINC’s vMUSEEnterprise solution delivers passenger processing as an Internet service. The check-in and departure functions use inexpensive “thin client” terminals in conjunction with an Internet connection.
“ARINC’s hosted solution is very economical to deploy,” states Tony Chapman, ARINC Senior Director, Integrated Travel Solutions. “It is completely scalable, so the airport can add new airlines at any time or expand the airport facilities when required by simply adding additional terminal. This ability makes vMUSE Enterprise an attractive cost-effective passenger solution, for seasonal, mid-size, or larger airports.”
Because the data processing for vMUSE Enterprise occurs at an off-site data centre managed by ARINC, there is no need for the costly servers, core rooms, and computer workstations typical with other common-use systems. The need for on-site server maintenance, back-ups, and health checks is also eliminated. Airports can lower their IT capital and support costs while enjoying advanced common-use passenger services with improved overall system reliability and security.
As an added benefit, vMUSE Enterprise greatly reduces power consumption compared with conventional server-based core systems, enabling airports to lower their carbon footprint.
Along with Warsaw, Poznan, and Wroclaw, Gdansk is one of Poland’s four Host Cities with venues for the UEFA (Union of European Football Associations) EURO 2012 matches. With the opening of Terminal 2, Gdansk Lech Walesa Airport will serve 5.0 million passengers a year. In addition to facility improvements for EURO 2012, the airport will enact a special management plan to ensure efficient and friendly service for the volume of fan traffic expected from all over Europe.
ARINC Incorporated, a portfolio company of The Carlyle Group, provides communications, engineering and integration solutions for commercial, defense and government customers worldwide. Headquartered in Annapolis, Maryland with regional headquarters in London and Singapore, ARINC is ISO 9001:2008 and AS9100 certified.
17.04.12 | Ink starts a revolution in sales force remuneration
Today Ink, the world leader in media that connects with travellers, has announced that it will be dramatically changing the way it incentivises its global sales teams. Through its new ‘Iceberg Thinking’ approach, which tackles behavioural issues below the surface, Ink will guarantee its sales teams and leaders’ commissions based on behavioural KPIs and not the traditional revenue and sales targets.
This revolutionary new approach will address the behaviours that lie beneath each media sale and not just reward the end result. Ink’s new structure will remove the risk for sales people as long as they focus on, perform and deliver the correct behaviours which will be the basis for delivering strong performance results. This is a win-win situation. As before, the teams will be remunerated on the sales they make, but only if they have sold it properly. Additionally, if the teams fulfil the sales process, Ink will guarantee to remunerate them even if those commitments do not lead to business or sales.
“This is a complete departure from the industry’s traditional commission based sales structure and it has the potential to revolutionise the way media sales are managed and rewarded in the future,” said Simon Leslie, Head of Publishing at Ink. “We firmly believe in our culture and supporting our people to perform to the very best levels that they can. The new emphasis will be on delivering exceptional customer service across the globe and ensuring our sales teams focus on helping our advertising customers to grow their businesses.”
The sales teams will receive guaranteed commission based on each of them delivering an agreed minimum daily commitment that will reflect the number of quality calls made to a decision maker. They will also be tasked with delivering a value sales proposition rather than a commodity sales approach. To emphasise the change in KPIs for commission, Ink is also scrapping its traditional 12-monthly targets in favour of 26-fortnightly targets. This is based on “Millionsecondthinking”. A million seconds runs from Monday morning to the following week Friday afternoon and in future all Ink sales tasks will be linked to this timeframe.
Gerry Ricketts, Managing Director of Ink Singapore explains; “We have found, through our experience, that in business the task expands to fill the time we have allocated to achieve it. By changing the way we manage our time, we will raise the bar in our people’s performances and the level of customer service we deliver. We have installed huge million second clocks in each of our offices to remind our teams that time is precious and good time management is needed to succeed.”
Ink is recruiting across all its offices including Atlanta, London, New York and Singapore. However, the company is looking for very specific people that buy into the company culture and who want to be challenged and developed.
“We are looking for exceptional candidates,” continued Leslie. “We want people who are passionate about delivering a five-star customer experience and who want to realise their performance potential. We are looking for bright, clever and creative leaders. And in return, Ink promises to share its “Happinkess and dreams” initiatives which help staff fulfil some of their life’s dreams and goals as well as provide an exciting and challenging work environment.”
If you want to hear more about this revolution, or you want to find out more about career opportunities at Ink, please go to www.ink-global.com.
16.04.12 | Inflight Productions adds another IFE expert to its helm
In a continued strategy to assist airlines with their in-flight entertainment (IFE) needs and objectives, world-leading content provider Inflight Productions (IFP) has appointed Roger Grange as Vice President of Content Acquisition and Licensing.
With over 21 years at IFP, Roger has amassed a wealth of expertise across the full spectrum of the IFE market, leading teams in multiple in-flight entertainment disciplines and pioneering IFP’s international expansion as Managing Director of the company’s Asia operations.
In addition, Roger has worked with many of the world’s leading airlines over the years to provide personalised services and launch new entertainment products and solutions that develop and deliver innovative content packages for airlines and their passengers.
Rob Hunter, CEO of Inflight Productions commented: “Roger is yet another example of the many experienced and knowledgeable teams we have at IFP. His solid expertise of the market place coupled with his pragmatic approach to delivering IFE projects uniquely position him to find new solutions for airline customers while working with the content distribution community, as the IFE industry continues to evolve.”
13.04.12 | Inflight Productions’ Leigh Mantle celebrates 25 years in the IFE industry
Leigh Mantle, Chief Operating Officer at Inflight Productions (IFP), will be marking his 25 years in the in-flight entertainment (IFE) industry when he accompanies a team of twenty staff at this year’s APEX TV Market Conference in Brighton, UK.
Originally a sound recordist in the music industry, Leigh joined what would become IFP in 1987. His technical skill and expertise enabled the business to expand into video and audio with Leigh introducing, in 1991, digital AVOD services and launching a state of the art facility in Covent Garden, London. From analog encoding and data management, through to the development of new tools such as the MMA tool, Leigh has helped IFP set industry standards.
In addition, Leigh is currently serving on the Board of APEX and is the Chair for the TV Market event in Brighton. He has helped to shape the direction of the event over the past two years by encouraging more vendors and promoting the growth of education sessions. In his role as COO at IFP, Leigh continues to inspire a new generation with his dynamic focus and commitment to providing engaging content and services to meet today’s airlines’ needs.
“IFP’s future is brighter and stronger than ever with the company moving into the digital arena,” commented Rob Hunter, CEO of Inflight Productions. “Leigh’s wealth of knowledge and expertise at the helm of IFP helps to ensure we continue to pave the way for the development of pioneering technology relevant to the needs of today’s airline customers and the IFE industry as a whole. We are delighted to be celebrating this milestone with him.”
12.04.12 | Design a magazine cover for High Life and win tickets to the London 2012 Paralympic Games
Always wanted to see your artwork on the front cover of a magazine? Well, our Design a Cover Competition could be your chance to show off your talent to millions of people across the globe.
To celebrate the London 2012 Paralympic Games, we’re challenging creatives out there to come up with a striking cover to feature on the front of the September issue of High Life. You can be as creative as you like – whether it’s graphic design, illustration, photography or a combination of styles – just focus on celebrating the Paralympic Games.
Our team of judges – artist Tracey Emin, illustrator Miles Donovan, Director of Communications at the British Paralympic Association Jane Jones, Head of Marketing at British Airways Abigail Comber, and High Life’s Art Director Jamie McPherson – will choose their favourite design.
The winner will also receive a pair of much sought-after tickets to the spectacular Opening Ceremony of the Paralympic Games on 29 August. Plus three runners-up will each receive a pair of tickets for the Paralympic Games.
The deadline for entries, which can be submitted online or by post, is Monday 16 April – so get creative!
12.04.12 | KID-Systeme wins Lufthansa deal for Long-Range Fleet Cabin Upgrade Program
Lufthansa German Airlines has appointed KID-Systeme as the supplier for a Long-Range Fleet Cabin Upgrade Program. This contract comprises the supply of KID´s well known 110 Volt SKYpower system, including the newly developed “Advanced Power Converter” (APC). The APC provides 110 Volt AC power for passenger portable equipment as well as 28 Volt DC power for the seat IFE equipment of Lufthansa´s IFE vendor.
Christian Körfgen, Vice President Product Management Inflight of Lufthansa German Airline said: “Already in the year 2000 Lufthansa selected KID´s seat power system. With offering this innovation to our passengers, Lufthansa set a significant milestone of passenger services in aviation history. Now, after 11 years of partnership we are glad to select KID again in order to make our future long range aircraft cabin upgrade program a success.”
Patrick Schrot General Manager of KID comments: “The KID management and teams are honored and delighted about this contract. It is a recognition for our continuous striving for value adding innovations, high quality products and first class customer service.”
12.04.12 | British Airways announces consultation to integrate bmi mainline
The acquisition of bmi by British Airways’ owner, International Airlines Group (IAG), was given regulatory approval from the European Commission in late March. bmi is losing more than £3m a week and, without this acquisition, was facing closure with the potential loss of all 2,700 UK based jobs.
The consultation proposes the full integration of bmi mainline into British Airways securing approximately 1,500 jobs. The integration proposals could result in up to 1,200 redundancies.
Jobs secured under the proposals include the transfer to British Airways of around 1,100 cabin crew, pilots and engineers based at Heathrow.
Up to 400 passenger services jobs would be secured at Heathrow Terminal 1.
The proposed UK redundancies consist primarily of roles based at bmi’s head office at Castle Donington and at regional airports. Consultation will seek to reduce the number and mitigate the impact of the proposed redundancies, including the potential to offer vacancies within British Airways at Heathrow.
British Airways will also be working on potential job opportunities with industry partners in the Midlands, such as Rolls-Royce, and will look to create jobs at its engineering facility in Glasgow from January 2014 when the contract for bmi aircraft heavy maintenance work outside the UK expires.
Keith Williams, British Airways’ chief executive, said: “bmi is heavily loss making and is not a viable business as it stands today. Our proposals would secure around 1,500 jobs that would otherwise have been lost. As we look to restructure the business and restore profitability, job losses are deeply regrettable but inevitable. We will work with the unions to explore as many options as possible and are already working with industry partners.
“This deal is good news for our customers and will offer new destinations, new routes and new schedules in due course. For customers with bmi bookings to or from Heathrow this summer, it is business as usual and customers can continue to book with confidence.”
As announced on December 22 last year, Lufthansa is to take on bmi’s defined benefit pension scheme before completion of the transaction, which is expected to take place around April 20. This scheme has been closed and the terms on which pensions will be retained will be agreed between Lufthansa and the bmi pension trustees. After completion, British Airways intends to maintain the bmi defined contribution pension arrangements for bmi employees with the potential, subject to the outcome of consultation, to transfer some or all of the bmi employees to the British Airways defined contribution scheme.
The acquisition of bmi mainline will give British Airways an additional 56 average daily slot pairs at Heathrow, of which up to 14 will be available to other carriers. Retained slots will be used to expand British Airways’ operations at Heathrow with customers benefiting from new destinations and more convenient schedules. The proposed integration would also include repainting the bmi mainline aircraft in British Airways’ livery.
12.04.12 | Scoot Takes Off with bespoke inflight magazine
Today Ink, the global leader in travel media that connects companies with travellers, announced that it will be producing the inflight magazine for Scoot, Singapore’s new low-cost, mid- to long-haul carrier. The new quarterly publication will be featured on board all Scoot flights starting in June 2012.
The publication, called Scoot, will be aimed at young and young-at-heart travellers. It will provide fun, entertaining and engaging content about fashion, sports, food and culture in the airline’s destinations, as well as giving news and information about Scoot.
“We are really excited about launching our first flights in June this year and all the pieces of the puzzle, including the magazine, are now being put into place,” said Campbell Wilson, CEO of Scoot. “With its understanding of Scoot’s brand and audience, we believe that Ink will be able to produce an inflight magazine that reflects our values and what we stand for. We know that the creative team at Ink will deliver a fantastic magazine that engages with and strengthens our relationship with our guests.”
Scoot magazine will provide advertisers and brands with an excellent platform to reach out to a group of highly sought-after travellers who are value seekers and empowered to make their own choices. Featuring some of the best editorial talent in the industry, the magazine will provide cost-efficient branding opportunities through both traditional print advertisements and content-related advertorials. In addition, Scoot will also actively promote new destinations and the latest travel trends.
“We are thrilled to be working with Scoot on their new magazine,” said Gerry Ricketts, Managing Director of Ink Singapore. “As this is a new magazine, we have a blank canvas to develop compelling and creative content that truly engages with the passenger and reflects the brand values and commercial objectives of one of the most innovative new airlines to launch this year. Not only that, but the routes it will offer and passenger numbers and demographic it will carry, will provide a great medium for other brands to spread their messages and reach new customers. We have built a fantastic team for Scoot who will not only create exciting content, but also generate revenue that can then be expanded into other media such as targeted advertising on confirmation pages, emails, itineraries, check-in emails and print-at-home boarding passes.”
11.04.12 | Ben Ainslie unveils first British Airways Carbon Fund project
Triple Olympic Gold medallist Ben Ainslie today officially unveiled British Airways’ first ever One Destination Carbon Fund Project.
The project has provided funding to Osprey Leisure Centre near Weymouth, allowing the centre to erect a series of solar panels, producing renewable energy and reducing energy bills.
The Centre is owned and operated by a charitable, not for profit organisation, which took over a former naval sports centre in order to provide sports facilities for the local community.
British Airways’ One Destination Carbon Fund was launched in 2011, replacing the airline’s Carbon Offsetting programme. It enables customers to support low carbon community projects in the UK directly by making a donation.
Ben Ainslie, speaking at an event to mark the opening of the project, said: “I’m thrilled to be back in Weymouth, opening the first Carbon Fund project. We all have our role to play in sustainability and with projects like this one, British Airways is making a real difference to local communities.”
Jonathon Counsell, British Airways’ head of environment, said: “The feedback we receive from our customers suggested they wanted to be able to support low carbon projects in the UK. We are delighted to have been able to provide Osprey Leisure Centre with funding, and look forward to contributing to many more low carbon projects.”
He added: “The One Destination Carbon Fund is just one aspect of our environmental strategy. We are committed to reducing our net carbon emissions by 50 per cent by 2050, we are investing in new aircraft and technology and we are leading the industry in pressing for a global framework for dealing with aviation’s emissions.”
Nigel Williams, general manager at Osprey Leisure Centre, said: “As a community organisation we are very grateful for the contribution made by British Airways towards the installation of our solar panels. Thousands of local people will benefit, while we reduce costs and our environmental impact.”
11.04.12 | Star Alliance to rely on Lufthansa Systems’ global data network for a further five years
Lufthansa Systems today announced that Star Alliance has recently extended the contract for operating the global Star Data Network by another five years. This decision underscores the trust Star Alliance places in Lufthansa Systems’ managed WAN solution. Star Data Network has connected the member carriers’ IT systems ever since it was launched back in 2006, today guaranteeing the nonstop exchange of data between 26 international airlines.
Star Data Network is a unique network cluster that serves all Star Alliance airlines, connecting all of the member carriers’ data centers with one another. The network is based on the latest version of SkyConnect from Lufthansa Systems. SkyConnect itself utilizes a multi-provider and multi-technology model that enables Lufthansa Systems to provide its customers with a solution that is perfectly tailored to their individual business processes. The intelligent coupling of secure Internet-based technologies with state-of-the art data connections results in the highest levels of availability and stability. At the same time, SkyConnect gives Lufthansa Systems an independent choice of network operators. This combination of technical stability and provider neutrality ensures a high level of operational reliability for the network, offering a decisive advantage for the Alliance as a whole.
“We were very satisfied with the performance of the Star Data Network and with the collaboration with Lufthansa Systems on this solution during the initial contract period,” said Justin Erbacci, VP Information technology at Star Alliance. “After careful evaluation of other potential options, we therefore decided in favour of extending the contract with Lufthansa Systems for a further five-year term.”
Star Data Network offers all Star Alliance members secure, high-availability access to global distribution systems (GDS) while also offering a platform for the daily exchange of thousands of messages relating to flight operations. “Star Data Network is Star Alliance’s data management backbone and the primary channel for the overall flow of data between the member airlines,” explains Bardo Werum, Senior Vice President Infrastructure at Lufthansa Systems. “These data include details of passengers, luggage and information about mileage programs – all of which must be handled with top priority and the utmost confidentiality. Networking the data in this way delivers significant synergy effects between the airlines and for the Alliance as a whole.”
One special feature of the solution is its interface to U.S. Customs & Border Protection. Star Alliance members flying to destinations in the USA use the Star Data Network to submit applicable passenger details to the authorities as required by law. Lufthansa Systems was the first provider to create such an interface and make it available to the airlines.
11.04.12 | Emirates Continues Roll-Out of Inflight Product Innovations
In line with its ongoing inflight product improvements, Emirates announces the launch of a new, enhanced, Graphical User Interface (GUI) developed by Panasonic Avionics Corporation (Panasonic). This new GUI will make accessing Emirates’ award-winning inflight entertainment system, iceDigital Widescreen, simpler to use – information, communication and entertainment – all at the passenger’s fingertips.
The new interface will be introduced within two weeks across Emirates’ A380 fleet and subsequently over the next year across the majority of Emirates’ Boeing 777 aircraft. It will be available in all classes of service, an Emirates standard. As the world’s largest operator of the A380 and Boeing 777 aircraft, Emirates will upgrade all aircraft equipped with the Panasonic eX2 platform; designed and produced with (Panasonic), the world leader in state-of-the-art in-flight entertainment and communication (IFEC) systems.
“Emirates has been tracking the commercial progress of GUIs, where an ever-expanding array of choices are available to consumers, and we wanted to bring the same experience, look, and feel available on smart phones and tablets to our loyal customers in an aircraft environment,” said Tim Clark, President Emirates airline. “Emirates has always been committed to continuous innovation of our ice systems and to providing our passengers with a unique and memorable onboard experience.”
“Subsequently, over the past 24 months working with our partner, Panasonic, Emirates has succeeded in creating a smart and simplified interface which will appeal to customers of all ages.”
Always at the forefront of inflight innovation, Emirates will roll-out a number of additional inflight product enhancements across the next few months as part of a multi-million dollar investment in onboard technology. Larger video screens, in all classes, will come into operation from May on new Boeing 777 aircraft, in addition to future Airbus A380 deliveries. An enhanced in-seat telephone handset and new Mode Controller in First Class and Business Class will also be introduced, ensuring a more seamless customer experience.
The new GUI is unique to Emirates airline and includes a wide range of advanced capabilities that enhances the distinctiveness and elegance of Emirates’ inflight system, ice Digital Widescreen. The new ice experience includes the capability for passengers to discover the full entertainment system by “swiping” or “scrolling” through the vast library of media and entertainment that is available on Emirates, send SMS and email messages, explore the moving map system, Airshow, watch the in-flight landscape cameras, and access live text news from the BBC.
“We are very honoured for the opportunity to work closely with the Emirates team to design and deliver this unique GUI which is simple yet elegant and caters for all ages,” said Paul Margis, Chief Executive Officer for Panasonic Avionics Corporation. “For many years, Panasonic and Emirates have shared a vision about the positive impact that IFEC can have on air travel, and we look forward to working with them on a unique, home-theater experience environment that ensures an amazing experience for their passengers.”
Since Emirates first introduced individual seatback video screens in 1992, it has invested millions of dollars in further onboard product enhancements, from the latest IFE technology, to an ever increasing choice of entertainment content from around the world.
Emirates is also committed to keeping its passengers the most connected in the sky. Every seat on all Emirates aircraft is already equipped with a seatback telephone and sms/email service and 90 aircraft feature the AeroMobile system, allowing passengers to use their own mobile phones inflight.
In another investment in the Emirates experience, Wi-Fi connectivity for passengers was introduced to the A380 fleet in December 2011 and is now available on 18 aircraft. All remaining Emirates A380s are due to have Wi-Fi installed this year and from July of 2012 all new A380s will be delivered to Emirates with full Wi-Fi, mobile phone and data services available, allowing the Emirates passenger to be in touch like never before.
10.04.12 | Oman Air selects AMP International
Oman Air has appointed AMP International (AMP), a division of the Post Modern Group, to supply movies, TV and audio. Under the agreement, AMP will be responsible for programming for all systems, effective July 1, 2012.
“We are honored and delighted to have been selected by Oman Air as their IFE content service provider, commented Amir Samnani, Managing Partner/COO of the Post Modern Group. “Oman Air is a rapidly growing and innovative airline. Our staff in both Dubai and Irvine look forward to assisting the Oman Air team in the continuous development of their passenger experience.”
Oman Air, the national carrier of the `Sultanate of Oman, has witnessed rapid growth since its launch in 1993. The airline has played a major role in making Muscat a major traffic hub and tourist destination. Its modern and fuel-efficient fleet, coupled with its high standards of safety and quality, has helped propel Oman Air to the forefront of the aviation industry. In 2010 Oman Air was the first airline in the world to introduce full inflight connectivity which dovetails with the Thales i5000 system on its A330 fleet, offering AVOD and live satellite television, USB ports and laptop power points in all three cabins.
10.04.2012 | ViaSat Streams HD Video with Ultra Small Airborne Satcom Terminal
Following previous ground testing, successful flight tests by ViaSat Inc. (NASDAQ: VSAT) have verified the industry’s highest performance for a mobile satellite broadband system using ultra-small aperture antennas. U.S. Special Forces (USSOCOM) and other service representatives witnessed an ISR exercise that streamed full motion, HD video over an airborne Ka-band satellite link, while also providing enough bandwidth for a concurrent video conference and Voice over IP (VOIP) phone calls.
After taking off in Ca