Last week was another amazing Aircraft Interiors Expo (AIX). It was a particularly special one for us, as we celebrated Panasonic Avionics' 40th birthday!
It was an exceptional week also because the accessible Inflight Entertainment and Connectivity (IFEC) solution we built in collaboration with United, Entertainment For All, won a prestigious Crystal Cabin award. The IFEC system, which recently debuted on the airline's 787-10 Dreamliner fleet, is the most accessible airline entertainment system in the world.
We joined hundreds of other companies at AIX in Hamburg, Germany, to showcase our latest innovations and concepts. From April 2–4, we hosted 1,060 key aviation decision-makers from around the world at our booth and showed them what we've been up to. Here's what they saw:
Arc: Inflight maps like you've never seen before
Our big reveal at AIX was Panasonic's new Arc Inflight Map Platform.
Even with an abundance of TV, movie, and game options on IFE systems, maps are still a hugely popular customer choice. We took the opportunity to elevate the map experience with Arc, a high-definition 3D inflight map application designed for Panasonic's NEXT and X Series IFEC systems.
By applying the latest trends in user experience (UX) and gaming design, our team re-imagined the map experience as an interactive interface with compelling visuals. Arc can deliver personalized maps and premium destination and point-of-interest content. It also offers airlines monetization opportunities via integrations with the Panasonic Marketplace e-commerce solution and OneMedia, our advertising platform.
Most importantly, Arc has extensive configuration and customization capabilities, enabling airlines to get exactly the mapping features their customers demand. Find out more about Arc here.
Wellness takes center stage
More and more passengers are looking to embark on wellness journeys—and the airline cabin is as good a place as any to start. Over the past couple of years, Panasonic has been working hard to expand our inflight wellness offerings.
In Hamburg, we unveiled a few of our latest solutions. Among them are Calm, the No. 1 app for meditation and sleep according to their website; and myNoise®, a collection of soundscapes designed to help customers filter out cabin sounds.
We also announced a new collaboration with Etihad Airways to help combat jet lag. The airline will be the first to try out Panasonic's wellness solution, the Jet Lag Adviser, developed in collaboration with Detalytics.
Finally, we also announced a new collaboration with audio companies Harman and JBL, which together have created headphones that perfectly match with Panasonic's HD Audio.
“Audio of the highest quality is a critical element of the passenger experience with a wide range of applications from the cinematic delivery of the latest blockbuster movies to creating the serenity that is a key part of our Wellness solutions," reflects Gaston Sandoval, Vice President of Product Management and Marketing.
“If we want travel to become the fourth place, we have to make it a place people enjoy being. We can't do it alone, so this is an action call to the industry as a whole to work together to make travel the fourth place."
Insights help power digital transformation
The business of travel has changed dramatically in the past decade, mostly due to new and fast-changing technologies. For airlines, new challenges and new opportunities seem to present themselves at every turn. As our CTO David Bartlett recently wrote, this is a “new golden age of air travel”.
At AIX, we unveiled Insights, a new cloud-based data analytics Software as a Service (SaaS) application that helps airlines make strategic, practical decisions about their operations. Insights gathers onboard and third-party data from a wide range of touchpoints and analyzes the data in real time, helping airlines make smarter business decisions. Get more details about Insights here.
Gaming adds a new dimension to the IFEC experience
Last week we also announced our new Gaming offer, which we're kicking off with major game makers Toca Boca and Gameloft, and esports as the latest addition to Sport 24 Extra’s live inflight entertainment programming.
By bringing Gaming to the cabin, we're helping airlines appeal to emerging segments of travelers, as well as helping airlines to maximize their IFEC investments through a better cost-to-value ratio than traditional media. Gaming also clears the path to new airline ancillaries. Look out for new gaming opportunities and announcements in the upcoming year!
Travel as the fourth place
After the first three spaces—home, work, and community gathering spaces—comes the experience of traveling. The fourth place is the convergence of affordable travel, exciting new destinations, and modern technology—all calibrated toward giving passengers the most personalized approach to travel the industry has ever seen.
We showed AIX attendees how Panasonic's suite of connectivity, inflight entertainment, and digital service offerings can work in concert to power an intuitive, holistic travel experience we call the fourth place. But, as our CTO David Bartlett noted at the show, Panasonic can't do it alone.
“If we want travel to become the fourth place, we have to make it a place people enjoy being," he told the crowd. “We can't do it alone, so this is an action call to the industry as a whole to work together to make travel the fourth place."
We're beyond excited to share more with you about our fourth place solutions in the months to come. Keep your eyes peeled for more on the Panasonic blog!