As FIFA World Cup fever swept the globe before the championship matches in 2018, fans eagerly planned out their lives in order to keep up with the event - the fear of realizing they would be inflight during an important match was very real. Conventionally, air travel has meant going dark for the duration of a flight—no communications, no breaking news, no live commentary. Traditional audio video on demand (AVOD) film and TV offerings may not come onboard until months after their original release date and leave a lack of variety of content type available to passengers. Live television capabilities, however, mean those issues are quickly becoming a thing of the past. Here's how.
The FIFA World Cup is the most viewed and followed sporting event in the world, exceeding even the Olympic Games and The Superbowl. With the majority of airlines only equipped with AVOD media services, passengers feel disconnected with what's happening on the ground – especially when the game they have been waiting for is on during their flight. Passengers want it, are thankful when they have it, and get disappointed or frustrated when their airline doesn't offer it, even threatening to book on an airline that does.
With live television, passengers are in control. They can use their mobile devices just as easily as their seat back screens to view live television channels. They can even schedule reminders to remind them to tune in.
Panasonic holds exclusive inflight distribution rights of IMG's premium sports channels, Sport 24 and Sport 24 Extra – the world's only 24/7 live sports channel for the airline industry.
Panasonic worked with airlines to broadcast the FIFA World Cup live inflight via the Sport 24 channels on seatbacks, overhead monitors, and personal electronic devices so passengers never missed a moment. Airlines that subscribed to Sport 24 via the live television service were able to deliver each FIFA World Cup game live to passengers. Watching FIFA World Cup games live inflight created an experience of excitement and togetherness for passengers.
Airlines equipped with live television during the FIFA World Cup received unprecedented positive feedback from customers on social media, which bolstered airlines' Net Promoter Score (NPS). With an average take rate of 12.23%, airlines with Sport 24 saw a 100.61% increase in viewership during the football world championship.