May was a busy month. There were exciting developments in the skies, including the reveal of Singapore Airlines’ long-awaited Premium Economy cabin, which I was fortunate enough to see in person. The final product was far better than pictures can communicate, and I expect it will do very well.
Here’s a list of the other trends in aviation which I covered this month:
Inflight Entertainment (IFE) has become the predominant differentiator for airlines, regardless of their business model. This makes lots of sense with cabin space tightening, though I’m starting to wonder how long that will continue–more on that in the coming months. Another developing trend is for Inflight Connectivity (IFC) to complement and enhance IFE through live streaming. This feature, along with the benefits of connected aircraft to airlines–potentially making aircraft maintenance and operations more efficient–is bound to make onboard Wi-Fi more common and powerful over the next five years. Exciting times. And should we worry about someone hacking IFE to mess with aircraft? Absolutely! But not so much.
It was an AvGeek treat speaking with FlightRadar24’s CEO, Fredrik Lindahl about the growth of the ultimate intelligent resource on the skies. In case you’re wondering, he’s a very clever and very likeable man.
As a writer, I am especially fascinated by the developing trend of publishers and book distributors partnering with airlines and airports to distribute books, newspapers, and–in the case of Amazon–other entertainment content.
I suspect it is this sort of brand partnership that will pay the bill for those pricey radome antennae on planes and massive upgrades in Wi-Fi infrastructure at Terminals. It could generate nice revenue for airlines and airports to boot.
There were other interesting developments in design, branding, and social media.
Australian airline amenities supplier, Buzz, makes me wish I were 10 again:
Getting to know the new Singapore Airlines Premium Economy cabin.
As I pointed out here on Flight Chic: it is not only modern and comfortable, but exceptionally well crafted.
And other developments in aviation technology, including valuable insights from SITA:
How SITA Measures Travel Tech’s “Feel Good” Factor, APEX Digital
And the seemingly never-ending Open Skies battle rages on in the US:
There was also tasty fun behind-the-scenes in aviation.
I never tire of learning just how complex the logistics of commercial aviation can be. It is a beautiful industry for many reasons, not the least of which is its ability to get billions of little things right every day so that millions of us can enjoy the pleasures of floating in the clouds.