Customer expectations mature as
cabin technology comes of age
Faster in-flight communications and significantly improved w...
2 | AIN Special Report | August 2014
Cabin Electronics Special Report
©2014AINPublications.AllRightsReserved.Forreprintsgo...
3 | AIN Special Report | August 2014
Cabin Electronics Special Report
©2014AINPublications.AllRightsReserved.Forreprintsgo...
4 | AIN Special Report | August 2014
Cabin Electronics Special Report
©2014AINPublications.AllRightsReserved.Forreprintsgo...
5 | AIN Special Report | August 2014
Cabin Electronics Special Report
©2014AINPublications.AllRightsReserved.Forreprintsgo...
6 | AIN Special Report | August 2014
Cabin Electronics Special Report
©2014AINPublications.AllRightsReserved.Forreprintsgo...
7 | AIN Special Report | August 2014
Cabin Electronics Special Report
©2014AINPublications.AllRightsReserved.Forreprintsgo...
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2014 AIN Cabin Electronics Special Report

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The 2014 Cabin Electronics Special Report, published by Aviation International News, spotlighting the growing demand for improved in-flight connectivity and faster broadband Internet speeds.

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2014 AIN Cabin Electronics Special Report

  1. 1. Customer expectations mature as cabin technology comes of age Faster in-flight communications and significantly improved wire- less connectivity remain the dominant themes among aircraft cabin outfitters and OEMs this year, as customers and the industry alike anticipate the introduction of improved systems able to use band- width available on the Ka band. Offering speeds up to 10 times faster than legacy L-band communications and the current state-of-the-art Ku-band systems, Ka-band connectivity promises to elevate in-cabin voice communications and data streaming from an experience com- parable to older dial-up modem speeds to capabilities rivaling and even surpassing today’s fastest and most advanced home and office Internet connections. In-flight entertainment (IFE) systems and advanced digi- tal cabin management systems (CMS) are such staples of mod- ern business aircraft that it is dif- ficult to believe that more than 25 years have passed since the earliest equipment found its way into the most expensive long- range aircraft. What is easy to believe, however, is that these systems will only continue to grow more advanced and more reliable as the industry shifts focus from the availability of such technologies to refining that equipment to make such systems more robust than ever, and offering faster speeds and connectivity than ever dreamed possible. “The trend is clearly toward office-in-the-sky,” said James Pearson, director of global business development in VIP and general aviation (GA) air- craft for ViaSat. “That capabil- ity has been limited, however, as previous solutions may not have offered the bandwidth necessary to do much more than send emails.” Furthermore, while such systems were once the exclu- sive domain of intercontinen- tal business aircraft, today’s medium-range business jet cus- tomers also expect to be able to access Web, instant messaging and email accounts through their laptops, smartphones and PDAs. “There isn’t much vari- ance between aircraft size to customer desires within our lineup,” said William Gay, completion sales director for Gulfstream Aerospace. “Our clients all want the same things: cabin comfort and cabin entertainment.” Those clients are also typ- ically well informed about the capabilities they want, though specific manufac- turers and capabilities often require detailed explanations and management of customer expectations. 1 | AIN Special Report | August 2014 ©2014AINPublications.AllRightsReserved.Forreprintsgotowww.ainonline.com Ku-band connectivity is available for much of the globe, giving passengers speeds of one to two Mbps. Environmental controls for Lufthansa Technik’s Nice HD CMS may be hardwired to the aircraft, or selected via an available iPad app. Cabin Electronics Special Report by Rob Finfrock Special Report 2014 Continues on next page u
  2. 2. 2 | AIN Special Report | August 2014 Cabin Electronics Special Report ©2014AINPublications.AllRightsReserved.Forreprintsgotowww.ainonline.com “We aren’t exactly spec’ing off-the-shelf equipment from Best Buy,” noted Stephen Maiden, president and CEO of Constant Aviation, a Cleve- land, Ohio-based MRO. “Inte- gration and approvals often require a significant amount of time, and…each job poses unique challenges. Most are custom one-off installa- tions, each requiring different equipment listings and modi- fications, with a heavy empha- sis on cabin electronics and amenities.” OEMs Build on Legacy Systems To Match Current Tech As customer expectations rise to meet rapidly evolving technological developments, manufacturers are building upon the foundations of their legacy product lines to add capability to existing systems. Earlier this year, TrueNorth Avionics launched its open- architecture Optelity prod- uct line, a new Wi-Fi platform complementing the compa- ny’s Simphone cabin commu- nications solution. “Simphone¯ remains a highly capable system, but it’s a decade old,” said TrueNorth CEO Mark van Berkel. “Optelity is our next step, which builds on advancements made in wire- less capacity, processor speeds and other technologies.” Intended as an upgrade path for existing Simphone¯ custom- ers, as well as an in-flight con- nectivity and entertainment solution for light jets, Optelity control boxes also occupy less space than TrueNorth’s earlier systems. Rockwell Collins announced at EBACE that it had surpassed 250 deliv- eries of its seven-year-old Venue cabin management sys- tem and entertainment solu- tion for business aircraft. The company bills Venue as an open-architecture design that “accommodates future tech­ nologies,” and is scalable from “a BBJ down to a Hawker or even turboprops.” “We’ve seen a huge pop in the retrofit market, includ- ing being selected last year on a handful of [high-end com- pletions],” added Lupita Ho, principal marketing manager for cabin systems at Rockwell Collins. That stems, she said, from “the capabilities and reli- ability of the system, and word of mouth has been enormous.” The latest Venue iteration, which includes fiber-optic cabling and high-definition vid­eo capabilities, will soon be available as a retrofit option on Bombardier Global XRS and Global 5000s equipped with the company’s earlier Cabin Electronic System (CES). Such scalability is important consid- ering the speed of technology’s advancements in the segment. Justin Dye, Honeywell product manager for cabin management and IFE, noted that Honeywell’s current busi- ness splits “roughly 50/50” between retrofits and OEM. “Original manufacturers are interesting customers,” he noted. “Each one has its preferred supplier; we all play where we play. The primary differences are in the level of configurability, as OEM installations are generally standardized.”Private jetliners are “always the most complex, and generally the capabilities scale to aircraft size.” ‘Robust Architecture’ Allows Future Upgrades Buyers seeking the latest in cabin electronics for their new business aircraft, or to retro- fit the latest systems to their existing airplane, may choose from dedicated communica- tions and in-flight connectivity solutions, to fully integrated CMS capabilities encompass- ing communications, enter- tainment packages, lighting and other features under a Smaller Aircraft Aren’t Neglected, But Fewer Options Available As the market continues to emphasize advanced CMS and in- flight entertainment solutions on medium-range and large-cabin business aircraft, smaller aircraft have not shared in these develop- ments. That stems from not only the price tags for these aircraft but also their shorter mission profiles. “We have seen requests for in- flight entertainment, but given our price of $3 million [for the Eclipse 550 very light jet], adding another $50,000 to $75,000 on top of that really doesn’t suit our mission,” said Ken Ross, pres- ident of global services and support for Eclipse Aerospace. “However, the 550 does offer power outlets at each seating position in the cabin, as well as USB ports to plug an iPad or similar device into.” Similarly, Daher-Socata also offers power ports and USB outlets in the cabin of its TBM 900 turboprop single, as well as XM satellite music or radio. PilatusAircraft includes moving- map displays in the cabins of PC-12 NG turboprop singles. Additionally, Cessna offers an onboard DVD-based entertainment system, complete with individual LCD video screens and wireless head- phones, as part of the Oasis executive interior package on its Grand Cara- van EX turboprop single. That actually exceeds the equipment level for its longer-legged Citation Mustang very light jet, which offers but two 12V power outlets in its four-place passen- ger cabin. –R.F. The JetJukeboxfrom Flight DisplaySystemsallowsstreaming of musicandmoviesand displaysa moving map. Flight Display Systems offers a line of HD displays ranging in size from seven to 42 inches. Continues on next page u uContinued from preceding page
  3. 3. 3 | AIN Special Report | August 2014 Cabin Electronics Special Report ©2014AINPublications.AllRightsReserved.Forreprintsgotowww.ainonline.com common system architecture and user interface. Flight Display Systems offers its Smart Cabin control system, allowing passengers to adjust lighting and cabin tem- perature, make galley service calls and control IFE and even an external flight view camera through its upgraded JetJuke- box wireless media streamer. Compatible with any iOS, Android or Windows device, JetJukebox allows streaming to mobile device screens as well as hardwired displays in the aircraft cabin, with cabin controls ranging from single- button OLED interfaces to a seven-inch touchscreen for use by flight attendants to control the cabin environment. HoneywellAerospacedeliv- ered its first all-digital Ovation Select CMS in late 2012. The system is an evolution from the company’s earlier Ovation C series CMS offering, with par- ticular emphasis on not only greater in-flight capabilities but also easier serviceability. In total, Ovation systems have been installed in approx- imately 1,600 aircraft, with Ovation Select installed on 54 aircraft, including Boe- ing Business Jets, the Global Express, Falcon 900 and G550. The system is also offered on Embraer’s Legacy 650 and Lineage 1000, as well as the upcoming Legacy 450 and 500. In addition to lighting and environmental controls, the system may be tailored to operate cabin window shades. “There has definitely been a shift to how cabin systems are viewed, from thinking of those components as hardware to considering the complete in- flight experience,” added Dye. “That brings in the flight crew, maintainers, passengers; all of those folks have a say in deter- mining what the cabin expe- rience should be, and how serviceable those systems are.” The result, Dye added, has been a shift toward smaller box sizes and fewer wires, to ease the installation process and turn the aircraft around quickly in the event of system maintenance. “Ovation Select is differ- entiated by the level of inte- gration available,” he said. “The system has a robust architecture that doesn’t need to be changed to accommo- date whatever you want to throw at it. Business people who are more interested in productivity may share a lap- top with the cabin through a VGA input, while all users appreciate low latency rates in the equipment, similar to their home entertainment systems.” Customers also want the option to reconfigure the sys- tem as needed, with a min- imum of downtime. “They want their main space, a living Rockwell Collins introduced its Venue cabin management system in 2007, as an open architecture design that could accommodate future technologies. Once available only for iOS devices, the system’s app to control the cabin is now also available on the Android. Passenger control of the cabin is finding its way to smaller aircraft. Passengers expect docking stations for their smart devices, and they expect to be able to control their environment from those devices, as they can by using iMedia in the G280, left, and the Heads Up Technologies-based Clairity CMS in Cessna aircraft, right. Continues on next page u uContinued from preceding page
  4. 4. 4 | AIN Special Report | August 2014 Cabin Electronics Special Report ©2014AINPublications.AllRightsReserved.Forreprintsgotowww.ainonline.com space and an office space,” Dye noted. “There might be 30 available Internet connections on the aircraft, some seats wired and others with wire- less access. Changing those locations around amounts to essentially a software push.” Integration and Reliability Are Key Although many OEMs select third-party vendors to equip new aircraft with cabin electronics systems, Gulf- stream opted to bring that process in-house for its G650. The Gulfstream Cabin Essen- tial package, also available in the company’s medium-range G280, gives the manufacturer complete control over the inte- gration process. “We are working toward making cabin interiors approach the reliability of other systems on board the aircraft,” said Gay. “A lot of that focus goes toward redun- dancy in the cabin systems, just as we see with engines and flight controls.” Gay added that when a system failure does occur, Gulfstream has emphasized maintaining a transparent user experienceforpassengers.“For example, if the path between a control station and a moni- tor is breached, the CMS will try to identify another path so that failure is transparent to the end user,” he noted. “The fault is recorded by the aircraft for maintenance personnel to address on the ground.” “At the speed this indus- try is growing, it’s important that any system be highly scalable,” Dye said. “If I need to swap out a video screen or add a microphone, how much in-depth work does that require? A bad DVD player may ground an aircraft, so we strive for a fit form swap and immediate parts avail- ability to complement the sys- tem’s robust architecture and backbone.” Customer Demand for Connectivity ‘Loud and Clear’ One overriding theme is clear among providers of OEM and retrofit cabin equipment and electronics: satellite-based voice com- munications and Internet streaming are the greatest priority among clients using business aircraft, and those customers are increasingly no longer satisfied with sys- tems offering significantly slower connection speeds and greater latency than most home Internet connections. “The industry is moving toward two primary areas,” noted Constant Aviation’s Maiden. “One is the ability to use your phone on an airplane as if it were your phone at utc aerospace highlights new cabin equipment UTC Aerospace Systems recently introduced its SVRH-100-x media server, a networked storage cen- ter for digital photos, music and 1080p HD movies for use by in-flight entertainment systems. Stored media may be streamed to hard- wired media players and displays or to passenger handheld devices such as iOS and Android smartphones and tab- lets. An integrated Digital Living Network Alliance server allows “device agnostic” content streaming between dissimilar devices and operating systems. UTC Aerospace also offers the Model 1 VIP seat, shown, featuring integrated wireless controls compatible with smart- phones and tablet devices. The seat is also equipped with a patented wireless charging system for handheld devices and heating and cooling controls to tailor the seating environment to individual passengers. Optional elec- tronic controls are also available for recline, leg rest, headrest, lumbar and tracking. Business aviation OEMs using the seat include Airbus, Embraer, Gulfstream, Piaggio and Pilatus. The Model 1 VIP seat can be equipped with the company’s plug-in arm to hold an iPad securely for easy passenger view- ing, as well as for use as a wireless cabin environment and in-flight entertainment control through use of UTC Aerospace Systems user apps. The arm also charges the docked iPad and may be tilted for opti- mal viewing. It can be quickly removed and stowed for takeoff and landing. The United Technologies subsidiary also offers a variety of power and connectivity, and personal control unit panels, including tailor- made systems to match any cabin interior treatment. –R.F. Passengers on board aircraft featuring Honeywell’s Ovation Select CMS can use their iPad or Android tablet to control environmental systems, including cabin lighting and audio, as well as powering the window shades up or down. Continues on next page u uContinued from preceding page
  5. 5. 5 | AIN Special Report | August 2014 Cabin Electronics Special Report ©2014AINPublications.AllRightsReserved.Forreprintsgotowww.ainonline.com home, and the second is offer- ing a level of comfort compa- rable with what customers are used to in their own homes. That means satellite commu- nications and connectivity to real-time streamed program- ming versus recorded offer- ings. The industry has spoken loud and clear that it wants simple voice communications and Wi-Fi solutions. “Our customers haven’t had a lot of negative feed- back regarding connectability, though they do want to know how they could operate faster,” he continued. “The focus is definitely on speed and band- width; it takes multiple mega- bytes just to launch Yahoo! or Google. Bandwidth and speed are the major touch points.” Operators must also be awareof thelimitationsof each coverage area and make their decision based on the region(s) where the aircraft will fly most frequently. “Satellites are posi- tioned differently for differ- ent coverage areas, of course, but limitations arise primar- ily from license requirements,” said Gay with Gulfstream. “Ku-based connectivity is available throughout North and South America, Western Europe, most of Africa, and the Middle East. However, it is not licensed in Asia-Pacific or Russia just yet.” The SwiftBroadband net- work from Inmarsat offers worldwide coverage, but the tradeoff is connectiv- ity speeds over the L-band. Gay further noted that oper- ators flying across the U.S. might have their needs met by Aircell’s ground-based Gogo network, “which offers extremely fast speeds and relatively low price.” “Offer[ing] high-speed, high-capability in-flight communications and enter- tainment is easier than ever before,” added Satcom1 co- owner and CEO Karina Larsen. “The technology is becoming more affordable, and hardware manufactur- ers are creating less expensive systems that are also easier to install. Additionally, solu- tion providers are now able to take advantage of better rates from satellite operators; the more consumers there are, the more affordable it gets.” Honeywell’s Dye believes the market is “at another inflection point”when it comes to connected aircraft. “The entire infrastructure adapts to a fatter and more robust ‘pipe’ between the ground and the aircraft,” he added. “Diagnos- tics change, as do configura- tion management and in-flight entertainment options. The game changes with a fat pipe.” On the Horizon: Ka-band Connectivity Indeed, a “fatter” pipe is on the horizon, in the form of data streamed on bandwidth available in the Ka-band that offers as much as 20 times the wireless connectivity speeds L-band systems can deliver. “Today’s satellite-based sys­tems provide between one and two Mbps of speed,” explained Curt Gray, director of satellite communications technologies with Melbourne, Fla.-based Satcom Direct. “That’s with Ku-band systems, operating at 12-18 GHz. Those systems rely on lots of satel- lites and capabilities designed for fixed locations that have been adapted over the years to work on moving aircraft. The next step up is Ka-band, which Everyone in the cabin has at least one personal electronic device to use during the flight, and passengers want the same speed and utility they have at home. The Tailwind 550 radome antenna enables private aircraft to receive Ku-band DBS (Direct Broadcast Satellite) television signals. It may be configured for up to 32 unique programming receivers. Continues on next page u uContinued from preceding page
  6. 6. 6 | AIN Special Report | August 2014 Cabin Electronics Special Report ©2014AINPublications.AllRightsReserved.Forreprintsgotowww.ainonline.com operates at up at 30 GHz. “I basically equate the dif- ference between L-band and Ka-band to real estate in New York versus land in Montana,” he added. “There’s a lot of wide-open space in Montana.” Despite the promise of increased bandwidth and sig- nificantly increased speeds, however, Ka-band systems do pose one technical challenge: the need for greater targeting accuracy than with existing L-band and Ku-band systems. “The dish locks onto a sig- nal from a satellite and basically draws a box around it,” Gray said. “That box is much smaller for Ka, so you need to be right on. To do that on a corpo- rate aircraft with an 11.5-inch dish, with equipment available now, you’re talking list prices approaching half a million dol- lars, certified, without factoring in installation.” That price tag also does not include the cost of a new radome able to receive Ka-band signals. Further- more, installation of Ka-band equipment represents a sep- arate aircraft system that, unlike existing cockpit avion- ics that also use the L-band, are not shared with any other portion of the aircraft. “That’s more equipment, and more weight, that you’re not replacing,” Gray noted. Some of that weight dis- parity, however, might be offset by smaller compo- nent packaging. “There’s less weight and fewer boxes than before,” said Larsen with Satcom1. “Even better, bandwidth speeds [on the Ka- band] are approaching the point where passengers may experience faster connectiv- ity in their airplanes than in their hometowns”–an attrac- tive tradeoff. Early stages of a fully real- ized Ka-band satellite network are in place, with airline JetBlue announcing late last year that it would use the ViaSat-1 sat- ellite to provide Ka-band wire- less connectivity for passengers on its domestic routes. “They’re consistently seeing 12 Mbps connection,” Gray noted. “As technologies improve, it’s real- istic to expect that Ka could provide a 10- to 20 Mbps con- nection speed to each passenger on board a business aircraft.” Inmarsat aims to have three Ka-band satellites spanning the globe, except for the poles, in coming years. The ViaSat-2 sat- ellite, which will cover the North Atlantic tracks, is scheduled to launch by 2017, while Eutel- Sat offers Ka-band connectivity over Europe and the Mideast. “All use different modem technologies that are not com- patible,” Gray said. “You can’t switch between satellites. There’s [also] debate about whether or not there will be enough capacity to handle everyone, given such wide ser- vice areas.” Some of those issues may be addressed through combined systems; for exam- ple, Gogo may be paired with SwiftBroadband to provide international L-band con- nectivity with access to LTE speeds over North America. Still, the direction the indus- try is heading is clear. “That’s the next wave, and we’re in excit- ing times,”Dye noted. “One of the things we’re also seeing is interest from systems integrators as they construct more complicated networks,” Pearson added, noting that ViaSat recently collaborated on routers for ICG and Sat- com Direct. “That means that GA users will benefit greatly from the expansion of Ka-Band systems, and we expect to see speeds comparable to what we’re seeing on [JetBlue.]” Rockwell Collins custom- ers will also benefit from that company’s acquisition last year of Arinc. The purchase included the newest genera- tion of Ka-band service for airline and business aviation customers under the GX Avi- ation banner. The first of three GX Avi- ation satellites is already in orbit and undergoing final testing, with the second and third scheduled to be in place before year-end. Airborne hardware is in the production phase; testing and certification are anticipated early next year. Rockwell Collins notes the system will provide Internet ICG Unveils ‘AeroChat’ App for eRouter-Equipped Aircraft International Communications Group (ICG) recently announced development of an AeroChat mobile app that allows customers greater flexibility to use their own personal electronic devices to make calls and send text messages in flight. Avail- able on iOS and Android platforms, the app will provide air-to-ground or ground-to-air VOIP communica- tions over Inmarsat and Ku/Ka-band systems managed by the compa- ny’s recently announced eRouter, as well as connectivity to an active voice account provided by Satcom Direct, Satcom1 or Arinc Direct. Offering a small footprint (12 inches by 8.5 by 3.75), ICG’s eRouter also offers certified 4G GSM (global system for mobile) cellular service that can be used for data connectivity and file transfers when the aircraft is on the ground. The front of the device provides three Sim card access ports, allowing operations in multiple geo- graphic regions without swapping out Sim cards. “The eRouter is...designed with a modular architecture to provide easy expandability and reduce product costs by offering operators only those services they might currently require, yet providing a forward upgrade path for future and emerging require- ments,” noted ICG vice president Brad Smith. “It is the lightest, smallest and most flexible aeronautical routing solution on the market today.” ICG currently offers the eRouter in ERT-100 configuration, allowing basic wireless access point connec- tivity and on-ground GSM, and the more advanced ERT-120 featuring enhanced connectivity speeds and AeroChat support. Future versions–to be available by next year’s fourth quarter–will pro- vide digital and analog private branch exchange (PBX) connectivity, tera- bytes of hard-drive capacity, and IFE and app-loading capabilities in the ERT-140; the ERT-160 will add aircraft status and health data routing capa- bilities. –R.F. In the Gulfstream G650 passengers can control LED lighting levels throughout the cabin via hardwired touchscreen panels, or through their own tablet devices. Continues on next page u uContinued from preceding page
  7. 7. 7 | AIN Special Report | August 2014 Cabin Electronics Special Report ©2014AINPublications.AllRightsReserved.Forreprintsgotowww.ainonline.com speedsof 50Mbpsvirtuallyany- where in the world. While con- verting an existing Venue CMS to work with the higher band- width available through Ka will require some hardware changes, the system’s overall open archi- tecture design remains the same. Refining User Interfaces and Adding Portability Just as the capabilities of cabin electronics systems have evolved, so too have the graph- ical user interfaces (GUI) to control cabin entertainment, lighting and communica- tions. Where once there were wired headset plugs and tog- gle switches adjacent to cabin seating, passengers on board today’s business aircraft will more likely find touchscreen displays either hardwired to the panel, or even with the ability to control their environment from the palm of their hand. Providing passengers with direct control of their seat- ing environment is a key sell- ing point for OEMs. Cessna bills its Clairity CMS, stan- dard on the Citation X+ and Sovereign+, as “an intelli- gent cabin management and entertainment technology solution integrated with the aircraft’s avionics and elec- trical systems.” Touchscreens located at each seat provide passengers with cabin light- ing, window shade and envi- ronmental controls, as well as data and power ports. Wi-Fi media sharing capabilities are available, allowing connectiv- ity to other passengers and streaming to portable elec- tronic devices. Cabin Essentials, Ovation Select and Venue also offer the capability to operate cabin controls through an app run- ning on a handheld tablet or smartphone. While Apple’s iOS was once the sole plat- form for these apps, other operating systems are gaining in popularity. “Our roadmap for Venue is in line with the consumer market,” said Ho with Rock- well Collins. “Everyone has a tablet, and in particular the Android platform is becom- ing more popular. As a result, we are porting our existing iOS cabin remote apps over to Android devices.” “Customers appreciate the higher level of control,” added Honeywell’s Dye. “No matter what kind of device the cus- tomer has, the interface should be common.” Dye noted that when differ- entiating between Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android, indi- vidual preferences tend to be segment-specific and–in par- ticular–region-specific. “iOS dominates the market in North America and is growing in China,” Dye said. “Outside those areas, however, Android rules the game. “As another example of how quickly our industry moves, we can also look at the growing market for Windows- based devices,” he contin- ued. “Just six months ago, we weren’t sure whether our next port would be to Windows OS or BlackBerry. However, it soon became clear that the lat- ter probably wasn’t where we wanted to go.” Lufthansa Technik Moves To Diversify Cabin Amenities Cabin systems also rep- resent a sizable business for MRO provider and aircraft outfitter Lufthansa Tech- nik. The company’s Nice HD CMS is available from several OEMs on aircraft ranging from the A320 series and BBJs and 747s to some Bom- bardier and Learjet busi- ness aircraft, including the upcoming Learjet 85. David Crossett, principal executive for innovation sales and support with the com- pany, noted that Lufthansa Technik is looking to move past its existing CMS offer- ing. “Our next step is a follow- on product that moves into even greater bandwidth and more futuristic algorithms for video. Our intent is moving away from disc-based movies, to movies stored on a server aboard the aircraft.” The company will soon release a new content service product that Crossett likened to “Netflix in the Sky,” offer- ing licensed Hollywood mov- ies through its IDair joint venture with Panasonic. The first installation will be on a Challenger 350 scheduled for delivery this month. “Ultimately, every aircraft featuring Nice HD will be delivered with a media cen- ter stocked with licensed con- tent,” Crossett added. “The aircraft will come with a com- plimentary two-month trial, with a subscription-based con- tinuation available past the trial period, with the ability to store between 30 and 40 titles out of a library of thousands.” As with IDair’s airline sys- tem, Crossett noted that con- tent will include “early window” offerings not yet available on DVD. The system will be rolled out regionally, with Europe and the Middle East following the system’s introduction to North American operators. Seeing a potential market for lower-priced entertainment solutions, Flight Display Sys- tems launched an entry-level IFE platform in July, called Jet- streamer. Offered at roughly half the price of a JetJukebox installation, Jetstreamer allows wireless streaming of movies, music and other content stored on board the aircraft server to tablets, laptops and smart- phones, without an external Internet connection. The sys- tem connects to the aircraft Wi-Fi router and allows con- tent streaming to as many as eight devices. “We know that aircraft own- ers are looking for cost-effective ways to include carry-on devices in in-flight entertainment, espe- cially without an Internet con- nection,” says FDS president DavidGray.“Jetstreamerallows passengers access to a library of content.” o Lufthansa Technik’s Nice cabin management system is available for a range of business jets. uContinued from preceding page

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