In the IFE industry, delivering first editions are a big deal. Literally years can pass and millions of dollars are spent rolling the first unit out the door. But what if an IFE company delivered two first editions within 10 days of each other – one, an installed system (RAVE) and the other, a portable with a new operating system (EDGE)?! Hats off to IMS for setting the bar high. An exuberant Joseph Renton, IMS Founder and CEO told IFExpress, “Most IFE companies consider it a success to deliver one new system model in a year – the IMS team delivered two firsts in 2011, RAVE on Sri Lanka (first flight Dec. 9) and EDGE on the Galaxy Tab portables to American Airlines. As far as I know, this has never been done before and I couldn’t be prouder of our IMS team!”

The RAVE & EDGE are the newest IFE products that deliver entertainment from installed and portable perspectives and demonstrate that time-to-market for IFE development programs is shrinking. “Most importantly,” noted Renton, “our customer airlines are able to keep abreast of passenger expectations with new technology and a broader range of programming.” From a delivery perspective, RAVE will be installed on 6 aircraft by year’s end, and to date, some 6,000 EDGE-equipped Galaxy Tab portables are in the hands of American’s passengers. IMS reports that passenger and airline feedback is very positive for both. This might be a good time to thank American for the inflight image of a focused passenger using the Galaxy Tab. It also might be a good place to share a couple observation that Mr. Renton made, “Both RAVE and EDGE represent paradigm shifts in the IFE market. First, EDGE demonstrates that the consumer influence on the IFE space is only growing. The key is having a strong and experienced integrator, who can further extend the consumer technology to the aircraft in a timely fashion resulting in a successful offering. Second, having the ability to uniquely architect an embedded IFE solution like RAVE, where the entire legacy IFE solution set is turned on its head, demonstrates a sincere understanding of what our airline customers are wanting and an ability to deliver it without large corporate overhead and bureaucracy.”

We should note that the Galaxy/EDGE portables were delivered with 128 GB of memory and, yes, there were Early Window movies. One of the first movie houses to approve the new devices was Paramount with others falling in line. As we noted earlier, American is the first EDGE customer with more to come, while Sri Lanka is the first of seven new customers for the installed RAVE product. We also note that EDGE is Android-based and acts like a smart GUI that is very intuitive. The design has proven itself with users intuitively navigating the screens.

On the RAVE side, the installed IFE system features a very affordable and highly functional entry into full-up IFE with two main LRU’s that weigh less than 3 pounds and uses less than 10 watts per seat! Easily maintained with the removable seatback entertainment assembly, RAVE is taking airlines by storm!

For more information about the complete IMS line contact Harry Gray, VP Sales & Marketing

In a game-changing approach, Android OS-based tablets are the basis for the newest EDGE™ portables with a 10.1-inch touch screen, and solid-state storage

Brea, CA | 7 September 2011 — The IMS Company remains committed to the handheld IFE space, and will come to APEX in Seattle with a unique version of its EDGE™ product, based on an Android operating system (OS) and a tablet form factor, according to The IMS Company’s vice president sales and marketing Harry Gray.

“This is a completely new approach to portables deployment in IFE,” said Gray, “which we believe is a game-changer.”
The newest EDGE™ portable media player offers a 10.1-inch capacitive, multi-touch touch screen, with 1280×800 (WXGA) screen resolution, using the Android OS (Honeycomb). The lithium ion battery supports approximately 9 hours of video or 72 hours of music. Content is stored on SD (Smart Digital) cards allowing the airline to determine the size of storage needed to meet its content requirements. The use of SD cards for content storage is ideal for IFE and virtually eliminates content loading time and expensive terrestrial loading equipment.

EDGE™ is APEX 0403-compliant and supports content playback in MPEG4, H.264, WMV7 and WMV9 with AAC audio playback. The user interface is also compatible with RAVE™ embedded IFE, so the airline can now have a similar standard that is applied to both products, making the passenger experience virtually seamless.

IMS’ Android-based solution is not limited to a single device but is designed for use with a range of Android OS devices. So, as other Android-based devices become available, the IMS solution can be easily ported from this device to the next. The IMS Company entered the portables market by repurposing consumer-off-the-shelf (COTS) hardware, including Fujitsu and ARCHOS devices, and quickly took leadership in the IFE portables space as a result.

The operating system approach restores the benefits of leveraging COTS technology, says Gray. Since the Android OS is an open standard, we can more easily adapt this technology to support IFE requirements (including Early Window content) as compared to other COTS products using a proprietary operating system.

EDGE™ gives The IMS Company an opportunity to apply more than 15 years’ experience providing IFE expertise to the airline market. We now have a family of products – both handheld and a fully certified AVOD system, that offers airlines the ability to provide an enhanced and consistent passenger experience and branding strategy using different products across their fleet.