Posts: 147
Joined: Wed Mar 08, 2000 6:59 am

Inseat Video With Personal Videos

Fri Mar 31, 2000 3:27 am

I have had the experiance of flying in planes with mutichannel PTVs but I have heard that some airlines have compact video or DVD players inseat that allow passengers a larger choice of movies along with total control over when they watch them. I also remember seeing this is a movie. If this really exsists I have no idea which airliners have it? Has anyone here experianced it?

RE: Inseat Video With Personal Videos

Fri Mar 31, 2000 3:52 am

Yes, I've heard of these aswell. Sony make these portable, multi-channel/DVD systems called "Watchmans". I think you connect this to a socket in your armrest to watch the available channels (News, Comedy etc.) and are able to pause which ever channel you are watching and re-play/ fast-forward it.

In the DVD versions, you ask the crew for your chosen movie, and they'll pass you the appropriate DVD, which you insert into the system. Actually, they are available commercially (Panasonic advertise their portable DVD players in National Geographic).

The only thing I am against on these, are that their screens are not really large enough to make watching a movie/TV enjoyable.

As far as I am aware, American Airlines, Singapore and AOM are offering the service to Biz/First pax. The majority of airlines are still offering in-seat or armrest systems though.


RE: Inseat Video With Personal Videos

Fri Mar 31, 2000 4:19 am

Yes, the Sony Watchman system allows you to choose from a selection of tapes exactly what to watch and when to watch it, and you can pause, fast-forward and rewind. To use this system, the airlines have to install power points in their seats to plug the screens into.

I'd say the screen size was roughly comparable to equivelant Seatback-TVs. In the UK both Air 2000 and Airtours use them in their Classic Premium/Premiair Gold cabins aboard Boeing 767-300s.

RE: Jet Setter

Fri Mar 31, 2000 5:24 am

Yep, you're right, I was comparing the screen size to EK's A330 Business Class screens-we flew the jet from MAN and they are the biggest I've seen! (A bit smaller than SQ's First Class ones).

SriLankan's new A330's are also operating the same IFE equipment in their BusinessFirst cabins (no surprise since EK has a controlling stake in SriLankan;the new livery reflects that).

Posts: 4994
Joined: Sun Nov 21, 1999 11:18 pm

RE: Inseat Video With Personal Videos

Fri Mar 31, 2000 5:34 am

Swissair now has tehm in their MD 11'S in C and F class.

Jeremiah Teahan
Goodbye SR-LX MD-11 / 6th of March 1991 to the 31st of October 2004

RE: Tailscraper

Fri Mar 31, 2000 6:04 am

Yeah, I've never flown Emirates but have seen the TV's in Business Class on their A330s - they are HUGE! They practically take up half the seatback.

Did you enjoy your visit to Manchester? It's my local airport (one of them - Sheffield City is closer!) I think it must be one of the most interesting in Europe because the majors like EK, SQ, AA and CX mix with commuter and charter airlines, plus it's quite a nice airport!

James (email me if you want)
Posts: 393
Joined: Tue Feb 22, 2000 7:54 am

RE: Inseat Video With Personal Videos

Fri Mar 31, 2000 9:41 am

The screen size for the PTVs in Singapore Airlines First Class is 14 inches.
Posts: 4830
Joined: Tue May 18, 1999 3:49 am

RE: Inseat Video With Personal Videos

Fri Mar 31, 2000 10:04 am

The Sony Watchmans I've received on the planes before weren't ever plugged in to the seat--they all ran on batteries (and they were a bitch when meal time came! Try manuvering heaps of food and that Watchman on your tray table!).

On all of the new Int'l FC seats on UA's widebodies, personal video players have been installed directly into the armrest, with nothing else to do put pop the tape in and press "play". They are wonderful, as you can get up and go to the bathroom or walk around without having missed any of your movie(s)! (Had them twice on HNL-SFO and once on IAD-LAX). Lookin' forward to them again in 15 days on my way to HKG, as the Pacific can look kinda' boring after a while!!

I highly doubt that there are any DVD players directly installed into the seat--I'm almost positive that the airlines (ie: AA) use portable DVD players (how would you install them, anyway?).


RE: Inseat Video With Personal Videos

Fri Mar 31, 2000 11:41 am

Yes, FLY777UAL,I've seen photos of the DVD players in use on American's First Class on the 777. They are portable, just like the Sony watchmans and sit on the tray table. The airline's I've had experience of have power points for the Sony Watchmans in the front of the armrest that you just plug into - I suppose it's easier for them than replacing batteries all the time because I bet they don't last that long!

The United system sonds really good though with the video player in the armrest.

Purdue Arrow
Posts: 947
Joined: Tue May 25, 1999 1:49 pm

RE: Inseat Video With Personal Videos

Fri Mar 31, 2000 12:30 pm

American, too, has arm-rest video in First class on their entire three-class fleet. In addition, they have armrest video in business on the 777. This system incorporates the arm-rest mounted screen and a personal video player. Passengers select from a list of movies (generally around 20 in business, 30 in First), and watch them at their own pace. To expand the personal video option, American introduced video walkmen to business class several years ago on aircraft that had no personal entertainment in business. Now, with the advent of the DVD, they have introduced portable DVD players to F in all three class flights, and are expanding it to include C in all of these flights. The only possible exception is on the 777, which already has a more modern PTV system than the other fleet types. I look forward to trying out the DVDs in May on a JFK-LAX flight. My understanding is that all F passengers get a portfolio containing the DVD player, a large selection of discs, and their Bose noice-cancelling headset.

RE: Inseat Video With Personal Videos

Fri Mar 31, 2000 12:35 pm

Yes, In the photo I saw of the DVD player on the AA 777, you get a flip-book, with the selection of DVDs in plastic pouches so you can just fick through and pick what you want - not bad!
Posts: 4830
Joined: Tue May 18, 1999 3:49 am

RE: Inseat Video With Personal Videos

Fri Mar 31, 2000 1:06 pm

The batteries are a joke! They last about 4 hrs or so, and then you have to get new ones!, And of course during the best part of the movie, LOW BATTERY just has to flash across the screen!  

I would really like to fly on AA with their DVD players. The funny thing is that when priced out (non-sale, retail prices), the DVD players are about $200 cheaper than the Watchmans, and yet most of the airlines use Watchmans! Oh well--

Posts: 784
Joined: Sun Jun 06, 1999 1:23 pm

RE: Inseat Video With Personal Videos

Fri Mar 31, 2000 9:43 pm

TG has Sony Watchman as a substitution for any planes without PTV in business and first class. But the planes which do.. you can still ask for them..

RE: Thai IFE

Sat Apr 01, 2000 1:50 am

Thai747, I'm sure it's the case now, however we flew a Thai A300-600 from Colombo to Bangkok in Jan, on Royal Executive Class, and there was no personal IFE, the centre screen provided that.  
(Mind you it's only three and a bit hours to BKK from CMB, and since it left at 1ish in the morning and got to BKK at 6, I slept most of the way!)

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