Airline Industry News, Trends, Analysis

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Airline Passenger Experience Aviation Matters In-Flight Connectivity Technically Speaking

As Wi-Fi Space Race Intensifies, Gogo Takes Bold Leap to Global Coverage

Gogo has announced a new Major Capacity Agreement with satellite company Intelsat on the Intelsat Globalised Network, becoming the anchor tenant for the world’s first GEO/LEO Shared Network, Intelsat/OneWeb.

“Gogo’s open strategy gives us the ability to look to the entire satellite market for innovation, and Intelsat’s EpicNG satellites combined with OneWeb’s LEO constellation offers numerous advantages for aviation,” said Gogo’s president and CEO, Michael Small.

Airlines Aviation Matters The Competitive Edge

Capital, Competition, and Technology are Focus of Fresh Leadership in United Board

Following the recent announcement that United Airlines President and CEO, Oscar Muñoz, will return to lead the company on March 14 after a period of convalescence from a heart transplant operation, the airline announces three new independent directors appointed to the United Board.

There selection reveals a focus by the airline on improving its access to and management of capital, strengthening its position among global carriers in the aviation political landscape, and developing an organisation at a the cutting edge of technology.

Airlines Aviation Matters

Partnerships More Important than Ever, Says Etihad CEO

In his keynote address to the Global Aerospace Summit, held as part of the Abu Dhabi Aviation and Aerospace Week, James Hogan, President and Chief Executive of Etihad Airways said partnerships are more important than ever in a global economy.

“To become a competitive global network carrier today is incredibly challenging,” Hogan said. “Partnerships allow us to compete effectively and give us scale and differentiation, as well as reducing cost and delivering major benefits, including operational cooperation, more consumer choice and competition, and job creation.”

Aircraft Aircraft Interiors Airline Passenger Experience Sitting Comfortably

The Passenger-Friendly Way this Independent Designer Would Approach Vertical Cabins

I’ve written about Olivier Grégoire’s proposal for a vertical cabin design previously on Skift.

He first approached me in December of last year with a unique concept to make vertical cabin design work around a passenger needs for space and privacy during long haul flights.

Grégoire has since sent me a link to a video he produced which illustrates more clearly how the design would work. He proposes the cabin concept for the A350 aircraft.

Reuters has recently confirmed the information I reported on from Airbus back in 2014, when the A350 first debuted that Airbus would consider a higher-density A350, especially in Asia where Airbus expects high demand.

So it’s a good time to think about more humane ways to get 400 people onboard.

Grégoire is not the only designer who believes horizontal layouts of seats will lead to insufferable conditions on ultra-long haul flights. A number of designers in the industry have emphasised that 3D seating is the way forward, even for premium cabins.

Even Airbus has considered stacking seats vertically to alleviate discomfort. But I believe Grégoire’s design is unique, elegant, and passenger friendly.

His design would give Economy passengers far more room than they could expect to get in today’s Economy cabins and greater separation from passengers around them.

  • Increased pitch (to 42 inches)
  • A better seat recline angle (35° instead of 15°).
  • Ease of access and evacuation, resulting from three aisles.
  • Improved relative privacy for passengers, with individual room for storage of carry-on items.

It’s also compelling that Olivier does not work in the aviation industry. In fact, he designs bedding–which might explain his focus on removing pain points.

That an objective third-party designer also believes vertical lay-outs are the way going forward, should at least make us a bit more open minded about this possibility. No initial design proposal is perfect, but Grégoire has really thought this through.

While his design concept is not a Crystal Cabin Award nominee–as he has not yet submitted it for review by the judges–I have suggested that Grégoire present a more detailed proposal for next year’s competition.

One of the best things about the Crystal Cabin Awards is that it not only encourages companies within aviation to think beyond conventional designs and propose new solutions, but it also welcomes perspectives from independent designers, companies, and educational institutions.

If you have the next great idea which could make aviation better for all of us, consider submitting it for review.