Let’s face it, Airshow’s are a great place for aircraft sales and where there are aircraft, there are IFE systems! We thought our readers might want a Tuesday summary of the preceding at Paris, so here goes:

So far, Boeing secured B737 MAX orders/order commitments from AerCap for 100 B737MAX aircraft, China’s Ruili Airlines (via Avic International Leasing) for 30 B737MAX planes, and SMBC Aviation Capital for 10 more B737MAX 8s. It also announced plan to roll out the B737MAX by end of 2015 in preparation for first flight in early 2016. Additionally, Korean Air announced the purchase of 30 B737Max aircraft. China’s Minsheng Aviation (Leasing) announced a commitment for 30 B737’s (Mix of NG B737’s and B737MAX aircraft). Sriwijaya Air (Jakarta Indonesia) announced an order for two Next-Gen B737-900ER’s. At the show, Boeing Commercial Airplanes President and CEO Ray Conner also provided a progress report on the three programs still in development — the 737 MAX, 777X and 787-10. “We’ve increased airplane production by more than 60 percent over the past five years by building our products on a lean and responsive production system,” said Conner. “Our focus is on executing our production rates and getting airplanes into the hands of our customers. We remain on track to deliver between 750 and 755 airplanes, a new industry record.”

Conner also outlined progress on the company’s Airplane Development programs. For the first time, Boeing announced that the 737 MAX will roll out of the factory by the end of this year and fly for the first time early next year. “Performance of the 737 MAX is meeting all of our expectations, with the airplane being 20 percent more fuel efficient than the first Next-Generation 737,” said Conner. The 777X is on schedule to reach firm configuration this year, begin final assembly in 2018 and be delivered in 2020. The 787 will transition to a production rate of 12 airplanes per month in 2016 and 14 per month by the end of the decade. First delivery of the 787-10 is scheduled for 2018. Further, at the show Boeing announced some R&D and Tech Innovations that should interest our readers – here are a couple: Secure, connected airplane that enables analytics-driven operations; Integrated sound and light inside the cabin that allow airlines to reinforce their branding and uniquely present valuable information to passengers; Entirely paperless flight deck.

Airbus announced orders from Peach Aviation (Japan – Low Cost) for three A320s and EVA Air for four A330-300s. Also, Korean Air ordered 30 A321neo’s with 20 options.

Honeywell Aerospace (NYSE:HON) and Inmarsat (LSE:ISAT.L) have successfully completed the first phase of hardware and satellite network flight tests for GX Aviation broadband services. Honeywell’s JetWave-branded hardware enables airplanes to connect to Inmarsat’s Global Xpress satellite constellation for GX Aviation global Ka-band in-flight Wi-Fi services. The tests, which included streaming YouTube videos and live radio, online conference calls, downloading files and more, were conducted in the U.K. in June 2015 – validating GX Aviation’s ability to deliver high-speed Wi-Fi connectivity while over land and water.

Another IFE news story comes from Zodiac Inflight Innovations: Airbus has selected Zodiac Aerospace’s Zodiac Inflight Innovations as a Buyer Furnished Equipment supplier for the Airbus High Bandwidth Connectivity (HBC) solution. Zodiac Inflight Innovations is supplying aircraft equipment, and other terminal hardware. As Lead supplier, Zodiac Inflight Innovations will manage the integration of the system and facilitate the Inmarsat Global Xpress service directly.
“High Bandwidth Connectivity (HBC) represents the new generation of connectivity services for both passengers and airlines”, said Matt Smith, CEO at Zodiac Inflight Innovations. “The system provides high speed Internet to passengers, and many other opportunities for airline ancillary revenue for example, and airlines will be able to improve operation via real time aircraft monitoring.” The current scope of this HBC program covers the Ka-band system for A320 single aisle family, the A330 long range family and the A380 aircraft. Larry Girard, Executive Vice President at Zodiac Inflight Innovations states, “The end result will be that airlines will be able to have different HBC options on multiple aircraft types, while providing a consistent service to both passengers and the airlines’ day-to-day operations. As the Lead supplier, Zodiac Inflight Innovations’ role is bringing together all the components for the High Bandwidth Connectivity program, including our own, and matching them to the Airbus process”, continued Girard. Zodiac Inflight Innovations is providing an ARINC-791 compliant radome, adapter plate, skirt seal, antenna, as well as other terminal hardware. The radome and adapter plate have been designed to be sufficiently flexible to accommodate other Ka-band antennas, minimizing the work required for future HBC systems. “We are building very a strong relationship with Airbus,” concluded Girard. “Not only is Zodiac Inflight Innovations a supplier selected to provide HBC equipment, but also our inflight entertainment solutions are approved as line-fit on A330 Long Range, and under study on other aircraft types.” Twenty five airlines around the world with over 200 aircraft in service are already using Zodiac Inflight Innovations Inflight Entertainment which includes our award winning RAVE Centric AVOD system and our latest RAVE Wireless streaming entertainment system

Rockwell Collins’ PAVES Broadcast in-flight entertainment (IFE) and Airshow 3D Moving Map systems will be featured on 15 new Next-Generation Boeing 737 aircraft on lease by China Eastern Airlines. Deliveries are expected to begin in late 2015. Rockwell Collins’ PAVES Broadcast overhead IFE significantly reduces size, weight, and power consumption compared to previous overhead system offerings. The system’s High Definition Media Server (HDMS) offers 160 gigabytes of solid-state digital audio and video storage capability, integrated pre-recorded announcements, and music (PRAM) functionality with embedded Airshow 3D Moving Map. Additionally, with PAVES Broadcast, airlines have the option to handle updates of non-encrypted content themselves or through the Rockwell Collins Content Services Group. This choice gives airlines flexibility in responding to commercial opportunities as they arise, since time-sensitive content can be replaced at a moment’s notice, anywhere in the world.

Thales reports from the show with a new IFE contract with Kuwait Airlines.

A good source of images and news, Aviation Week Paris Airshow 2015 Highlights is here and check daily!

Global communications service provider, Gogo, announced that it will bring its in-flight connectivity services to GOL, the largest low-cost and best-fare airline in Latin America. GOL will be the first Brazilian airline to offer broadband Internet access to its passengers. As part of the agreement, Gogo will outfit GOL’s entire fleet of aircraft with Gogo’s satellite service – 2Ku. In addition to providing In-flight Internet, all of GOL’s aircraft will also be outfitted with Gogo’s wireless in-flight entertainment system, Gogo Vision, and Gogo’s new IPTV solution, Gogo TV – on all of the aircraft. Gogo TV enables airlines to deliver live television content to a passenger’s own Wi-Fi enabled device. The service will initially be available only to airlines that select Gogo’s 2Ku technology and will be delivered through the Wi-Fi system onboard the aircraft using Internet protocol. Gogo believes that 2Ku will be the best solution on the market for IPTV. “This is a major win for Gogo and represents a number of firsts for Gogo. GOL is Gogo’s first airline partner in South America and the first airline to commit to Gogo’s television product. It also represents the largest aircraft commitment to our 2Ku technology outside of North America,” said Michael Small, Gogo’s president and CEO. “We believe that 2Ku will be the best performing technology in the global aero market. This performance is expected to be even better near the equator, where a large percentage of GOL’s aircraft operate.” Gogo expects to begin offering connectivity services on GOL towards the middle of 2016. 2Ku, Gogo’s next generation satellite technology, is expected to deliver peak speeds of more than 70 Mbps to the aircraft, which is more than 20 times the bandwidth when compared to Gogo’s first generation Air to Ground solution in the U.S.

Hong Kong International Airport is leading the way in Asia Pacific with trials of beacons to provide key information directly to passengers’ mobile devices, to further improve their journey through the airport. SITA Lab, the technology research team for global IT provider SITA, has installed more than fifty beacons in Terminal 1 at Hong Kong International Airport for one of these innovative trials. Beacon technology triggers the display of location-relevant information on devices at the right time and in the right situation. With beacons, airports and airlines can provide passengers with indoor directions, walk times to gates, lounge access and alerts about boarding. Knowing where a passenger is before sending information enables more effective communication. Beacons can help reduce congestion and bottlenecks, improving the passenger flow in airports by giving passengers accurate and timely information. In turn, that leads to smoother boarding and more on-time departures. Providing way-finding information also means that passengers know how long it will take to get to the gate, increasing the time they spend in the retail area, which is good news for the airport’s tenants. As part of its role of providing value to the air transport community, SITA has established the Common-Use Beacon Registry. Using this directory, airlines, retailers and other service-providers across the world can provide beacon-based services over shared infrastructure. As well as reducing the cost of installing beacons, the IT is simpler and eliminates the need for everyone to manage their own beacons.

Inmarsat, a leading provider of global mobile satellite communications services, announced that Hawaiian Airlines is now the first commercial airline to fly with its SwiftBroadband Safety service on its Boeing 767-300 fleet. The first flight took place on June 3 after the Supplemental Type Certificate for the service was awarded.

Wanna see an incredible B787-9 take-off in Moses Lake, WA? Looks like ninety degrees vertical to us – don’t miss this! –

FORECAST INTERNATIONAL projects 26,676 large commercial airliners worth $4,230b will be manufactured by Boeing, Airbus, UAC, Bombardier and COMAC over next 15 years.

Lastly, Trying to learn ABOUT code? This is a great piece of work – Paul Ford: What is Code? | Bloomberg

– APEX 2012 EXPO – Long Beach, CA | September 17, 2012–Thales, leader in In-Flight Entertainment and Connectivity (IFEC) systems, is delighted to announce that Saudia Airlines has signed a new IFEC agreement to install the TopSeries system on a total of 54 aircraft. This is a major step forward for both Thales and Saudia that introduces the award winning TopSeries AVANT® system, TopConnect suite of Connectivity and brand new TopSeries AVATM adding wireless content streaming to the airline’s future aircraft. TopSeries AVANT® is an Android® based, next generation system which combines the strengths of earlier platforms with advanced technologies, such as high definition video, solid state drives and faster processors, to deliver an enhanced passenger experience never seen before.

This latest arrangement between Thales and Saudia covers A320, A330, B777 and 787 fleets. In addition, the airline is soon to deploy a new passenger interface that affords exceptional performance, new capabilities and stunning visuals. The coordination and mutual commitment this project entails makes Thales one of the airlines’ key strategic partners in a long-term transformation project. Since its start in 1945, Saudia Airlines has received many industry awards and is recognized as a favorite local and international carrier, and recently became the newest and first Middle East member of the Skyteam Alliance.

MR. Tarik Sindi, Vice President Marketing and Product Management of Saudia Airlines commented: “Passengers across the region are fast becoming extremely discerning and demand ever evolved the levels of service excellence and technology offering from their in- cabin experience. Our goal is to truly take our place amongst the new breed of major global carriers for passenger satisfaction and customer service. This project is designed to achieve that aim with our choice partner Thales who will provide our passengers with the best in-flight entertainment system available in the skies.”

Commenting on this very significant project, Alan Pellegrini Chief Executive Officer of the Thales In-flight Entertainment business said: “In-flight entertainment systems can have a direct and lasting impact on passenger perceptions of an airline’s service excellence, and carriers such as Saudia are now leading the world in designing and deploying the very best cabin experience. This is a bold and ambitious project, and we are very proud of the confidence placed in our systems and people by such an important customer as Saudia.”

– Supplier Support Rating Award Winners Judged by 124 Airbus Operators

July 10, 2012– On the occasion of the annual Airbus Suppliers Awards ceremony held during the Farnborough Air Show 2012, Didier Lux, Airbus Executive Vice President Customer Services, presented awards to recognise Systems & Equipment suppliers to Airbus who have achieved outstanding levels of customer satisfaction. To determine the shortlist, the rating process included inputs from 124 participating Airbus operators – more than ever before. The awards are divided into two categories: ‘Gold’ and ‘Silver’.

Gold Award: Airbus Kid Systeme / Airbus Cabin Systems; Airbus Avionics; Rockwell Collins Avionics; Thales Avionics; Technofan; and Diehl Aerospace received each a Gold Award for their consistent delivery of “Exceptional Customer Support Performance” and being in the top 10 for five years or more.

Silver Award: EADS Sogerma (Technical Seats); Hamilton Sundstrand; Nord Micro; and Messier-Bugatti-Dowty (Landing Gears and Systems Integration Division) received each a Silver Award for their consistent delivery of “Excellent Customer Support Performance” and being in the top 10 ranking.

Most Improved Supplier Award: Aircelle for their gain of 14 ranks and 4.32 points in the Rating this year.

The major equipment suppliers to the Airbus family are rated on three criteria: the ability to provide continuously reliable equipment and systems including technical support; ensuring effective operational support services are aligned to Airbus support standards; benchmarking cost of ownership in terms of spares pricing and equipment direct maintenance cost.

“Following a constantly increasing response rate, 124 airlines representing 90 percent of the Airbus in-service fleet have participated to the Supplier Support Rating,” said Lux. “Once more, this clearly demonstrates that the Airbus Supplier Support Rating is setting the standards within our industry.”

The next rating cycle will be launched during the final quarter of 2012. Airbus monitors suppliers ensuring they instigate dedicated actions and thus continuously improve their own performance, and benefiting the reliability of the Airbus fleet as a whole.

Note: Cabin Buyer Furnished Equipment (BFE) suppliers received their awards earlier this year at the Aircraft Interiors Expo in Hamburg, Germany. Engine manufacturers are not included in these awards as they are rated separately.

Each year, for the last umpteen years, IFExpress has delivered readers a show preview based on a published invitation to all. This year is no different and we urge all attendees to be sure to visit their booth and tell them IFExpress sent you!

Company: Astronics AES
Booth: 701
Contact: Dennis Markert / dennis.markert@astronics.com / 425 442 8195

Astronics AES will be displaying their latest product addition to the world leading EmPower(R) In-Seat Power Systems (ISPS) product line. The new EmPower(R) In-Seat Power Supply produces an industry leading 200VA for each Personal Electronic Device (PED) and includes three Universal Serial Bus (USB) power outputs for passenger devices such as smart phones, iPods, cameras, and other standard +5 Volt DC devices. This is all accomplished in a smaller form factor than previous generations of the industry leading EmPower(R) product line.

Company: digEcor
Booth: 627
Contact: Adam Williams / awilliams@digEcor.com

DIGECOR HIGHLIGHTS: We will showcase the digEplayer L7, which airlines around the world have rapidly adopted, as a low cost yet rugged and feature rich IFE solution. Airlines can also find out more about In-flight Content Services, including the ability to support handhelds, overheads, and AVOD systems independent of a digEplayer agreement. Interested in Ancillary Revenue? We’ve been a long time supporter. Our customers have been generating revenue and operating self-sustaining IFE programs for years. So stop by our booth and chat with us about rental programs, shopping solutions, and advertising. We may not have a cool and highly publicized theme for the show, but if we did, it would probably be, “Come for the coffee, stay for the movies.”

Company: Goodrich
Booth number 1309
Contact Dan Vargas / dan.vargas@goodrich.com / (323) 837-2717

Goodrich digital video reproducers (VRUs) are a cost-effective way to update existing tape systems for an enhanced passenger entertainment experience. Be certain to stop by and visit us during APEX.

Company: IFPL
Booth#: 819
Contact: Claire Underwoord / claire.underwood@ifpl.com

Near Field Communication Demo
IFPL has developed an interface between NFC and IFE systems. This takes the mobile wallet concept onto aircraft and addresses the security issues of high value payments. The system on show can be used in a number of ways: as chip and pin; with NFC enabled ‘connect’ cards and with NFC enabled mobile ‘phones. This opens up a range of possibilities from renting movies, buying drinks and food and accessing destination information (i.e. increasing advertising revenue).

Self-testing jack
Currently airline maintenance personnel have to plug a headset into each audio jack to check it is receiving sound. This is time consuming and therefore costly and inefficient in short turnaround times. The self-testing jack has an LED that shows it is receiving a signal, meaning that all personnel have to do is play the IFE and walk through the cabin, spotting faulty jacks at a glance. The really clever thing about this jack is that is does not need any extra power to the seat to work, the light draws power from the audio signal.

Breakaway jack
IFPL’s highly reliable Long Life jack (tested to 100,000 insertions) has been developed to have a 90˚ pull out feature. This means that if a passenger stands up without removing their headset, it will pull away at any angle, without breaking the pin. IFPL has worked with headset suppliers to produce headsets with a smaller pin at the same cost as regular headsets. The breakaway jack will still accept a regular pin if necessary. IFPL see this as a low cost alternative to magnetic jacks.

As usual, IFPL will be holding a simple competition on their booth. The prize is a Nikon Coolpix digital projector camera. This neat little camera allows immediate projection of your photos onto any flat white surface.

We’re pleased to announce that IFPL will be showcasing an extra product at the APEX show next week!
The “Self Testing Audio Jack” is a neat solution to a common problem. Maintenance personnel have to walk the aircraft with a headset and plug it in to each audio jack at every seat to check that the audio is working. This is a time consuming job, and often means that seats don’t always get tested before a turnaround. Our new product is simple – it has a built-in LED that illuminates when audio is present. A quick scan of the seats tells you whether the jacks are working or not. This means you can go straight to any faulty jacks without wasting time checking every one manually. This simple device will improve IFE Availability and save airlines time and money. The really clever part is that this device doesn’t require power, or batteries – it runs off the audio supply! So, if you want to retrofit an old IFE system without power at the seat, it couldn’t be easier.

Just another reason to come and see us on booth 819 during the APEX show. Hope to see you this week!

Company: The IMS Company
Booth 1210
Contact: Harry Gray, vice president sales & marketing / hgray@imsco-us.com

Building up a head of steam at last spring’s Aircraft Interiors Expo (AIX), seat-centric IFE has become a juggernaut and none more so than The IMS Company’s RAVE™ with a backlog of more than 50 aircraft awaiting installation in 2011. If all of the options these orders are activated, the number of aircraft more than doubles. With Lufthansa, airberlin, SriLankan and Brussels Airlines onboard, additional announcements are expected at the Conference—bringing the total to seven or more.

But seat-centric IFE is not all that IMS is up to nowadays. Its new EDGE portables focus on Android OS as a platform that can support multiple versions of tablets. Look for announcements during the Conference.

Company: Panasonic Avionics Corporation
Booth: 301
Contact: Please stop by the Panasonic booth to arrange a tour or set up an appointment.

PANASONIC AVIONICS HIGHLIGHTS: At this year’s APEX Expo, Panasonic Avionics Corporation will be unveiling the three newest members of its X Series family. During the show, attendees are also invited to stop by the Panasonic booth for a chance to ask our eXPerts questions about the most exciting topics in IFEC today including seat centric vs. server-based architectures, Ka vs. Ku, and more. In addition, we are pleased to once again showcase our Cool Room where we’ll demonstrate how some of the most cutting-edge products in the consumer market can be applied to IFEC.

Company: PlaneBill
Booth: 850
Contact: Massimo De Sanctis / Mob: +39 335 222908 / Massimo.DeSanctis@planebill.com

On board portals for passengers (JetPortal) and for crew (CrewPortal).

PlaneApps for the emerging mobile platforms, Apple iOS, Google Android, Microsoft/Nokia Windows Phone 7, RIM QNX. Apps for smartphones (iPhone/iPod/iPad, Android phones and windows phone 7) and tablets (iPad, Android tablets) will be on show.

Before flight data crawler (DataCatering) for flight location based Services (origin/destination). Data mining to provide airline with useful information captured during flight on passengers devices,services, messages, behavior and feedback PlaneRoaming for reaching passengers on their mobile number without a cellular infrastructure.

Company: Rockwell Collins
Booth# 1001
Contact: Kelly Holland / 949-872-3308 (mobile) / klholla1@rockwellcollins.com

Rockwell Collins plans to unveil a new IFE solution for the single-aisle market tomorrow at APEX that will deliver unprecedented versatility for airlines and maximum reliability for passengers. The company also plans to announce stunning enhancements to its dPAVES IFE system, and a new entertainment solution for the regional jet market. Stop by Rockwell Collins’ exhibit to learn more about these new offerings and solutions to enhance the passenger experience.

Company: THALES
Booth#: 1401
Contact: Suzane Treneer / suzane.treneer@us.thalesgroup.com

THALES HIGHLIGHTS: CONNECT, NETWORK, PLAY is the Thales theme this year with focus on the Passenger Experience. Thales will be making significant announcements around in the air and on the ground wireless connectivity. Center stage will be the latest addition to the TopSeries product family, TopSeries AVANT. Installed into a new premium class Contour seat, TopSeries AVANT will include some future system navigation and audio concepts. Other demos include system integration into B/E Aerospace, Weber and Recaro economy seats. In the B/E Seat is a new innovative arm mount designed by Bucher. The up and coming new Thales Application Portal will be featured as well as future modules for Passenger Electronic Device interface capabilities.

Company: TriaGnoSys
Booth# 829
Contact: Charlie Pryor / +44 (0) 20 7031 8270 / charlie.pryor@leidar.com

TriaGnoSys and Siemens CMT have today launched IFEConneX, a complete inflight entertainment and communication (IFEC) solution. It incorporates an entertainment and media distribution system into the TriaGnoSys inflight GSM solution, GSMConneX, which was launched at Aircraft Interiors in April 2011. The lightweight modular system provides three services: GSM, WLAN and wireless streaming of IFE content, enabling business jet operators to combine the three services.

IFEConneX enables passengers to use their own mobile phone, tablet or laptop for calls, text messaging, emails, Internet connectivity, and for Audio and Video On Demand (AVOD). The solution has the capacity to stream individual content to up to 100 passengers simultaneously.

Company: VT Miltope
Booth: 1301
Contact Name: Jeff Drader / jdrader@miltope.com / 949 752 8191

Miltope’s family of network products offer the required functionality necessary to create custom airborne networks similar to how office networks are created. Designed to be readily expanded, they may be configured to define a network that optimizes the combination of interfaces and computing resources to meet the operational, spatial, and functional requirements of simple to complex airborne networks at a minimum cost. Products include servers, Ethernet switches and routers, 802.11 a/b/g/n wireless access points, TWLU wireless bridging from an aircraft LAN to a ground LAN, ARINC 744 network printers and ARINC740 cockpit printer, cabin control panels, and data storage devices.

Editors Note: We thought Seattle visitors might like a bit more info on restaurants and we suggest visiting the Yelp website. While there are too many to name here, IFExpress has heard a few “WOW” comments on the following:
Within walking distance to the Conference:
RN 74 – 1433 4th Ave. (4th & Pike), Regional French Cuisine, 206 457 7474
Driving Distance from the Conference:
Revel – 403 N 36th St., Fremont District, Korean Fusion, 206 547 2040
Walrus & Carpenter – 4743 Ballard Ave. NW, American Seafood, 206 395 9227