washingtonian
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Will PTVs Ever Be Standard In The US?

Fri Jul 01, 2011 5:16 pm

Will PTVs ever be standard on domestic carriers in the United States? Starting with jetBlue in 2000 and then Virgin America in 2007, it seemed that PTVs were going to become standard. Delta raced to put PTVs in a good chunk of its fleet that flies transcon, Continental started to equip its entier domestic fleet with PTVs, etc. But with the advent of in-flight wifi, offering PTVs quite literally all of a sudden seemed perhaps not as important as it once was.

So I guess my question is are we past the peak of seeing PTVs in the United States? With all of this talk of a huge impending narrowbody order by Delta and American (and let's not forget that United will have to place a narrowbody order within the next few years as well), will Delta or American choose to configure these birds with PTVs from the start or is inflight wifi the new standard? Is it even possible/economically feasible to configure a C-series jet with PTVs? I believe jetBlue is the only airline to have PTVs in its E-190 fleet (roughly the same size as the C-series), but it hasn't become widespread on E-jets.

[Edited 2011-07-01 10:17:45]
 
aznmadsci
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RE: Will PTVs Ever Be Standard In The US?

Fri Jul 01, 2011 5:27 pm

Quoting washingtonian (Thread starter):
I believe jetBlue is the only airline to have PTVs in its E-190

In the US, yes. In North America, no. AC has them on their E190s.

PTVs will be a standardized product while more people want WiFi access. While widebody, long-haul flights will have AVOD, it will be interesting to see if people prefer AVOD over LiveTV on short-haul narrowbody flights. Between the two, I would rather have AVOD than LiveTV. Is LiveTV seeing profits from CO flights?
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timf
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RE: Will PTVs Ever Be Standard In The US?

Fri Jul 01, 2011 5:43 pm

PTVs will always be the airline's choice. As long as the systems generate more revenue than they cost to install and maintain, you will continue to see airlines offer them. The same holds true for inflight Wi-Fi systems.

At this point in time, AA apparently does not see value in domestic PTVs as they continue to use overhead video for their new deliveries. I'm sure this will be re-evaluated with their next order, but I would not expect PTVs to become standard unless there was evidence that not having them was a competitive disadvantage.

In my casual observations of flights that offer PTVs, I find very few people using the systems when they are forced to pay for content. Therefore, I doubt most people factor in whether or not PTVs are offered when purchasing a ticket. I know I do, but I'm the minority. While I would love to see PTVs become standard across all newly delivered aircraft at legacy carriers, I don't see it happening.
 
B6JFKH81
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RE: Will PTVs Ever Be Standard In The US?

Fri Jul 01, 2011 5:53 pm

I don't think PTV's will become standard in all airlines in the US. Some LFC/LCC's like B6 and VX will have them, while others really trying to stick to the LCC/ULCC model will probably not install them (NK and G4) due to costs alone. Airlines not falling into the LFC/LCC/ULCC arena like F9, DL and CO have it, and I see it coming down the line for AA (they have to consider it to stay competative). WN? Who knows. FL has XM radio (also a product of LiveTv, owned by B6), so the FL planes coming into the WN fleet will have that, but I think WN is more interested in the WiFi right now. In-seat IFE adds a bunch of weight and complexity in the systems, extra maintenance, and extra costs in keeping spares.

I think we will see a mix. As long as there are people looking for a $40 transcon flight, the airline offering that will need to keep its costs as low as possible, and PTV's/IFE is really not an option. But, as some of the older birds of the other airlines start going out to the desert and replacements come off factory lines for the non-ULCCs, we will probably start to see it becoming MUCH more common in the future. LiveTV, AVOD, or even just movies (paid or free for all of the above), it will become much more common in my opinion.

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flyingcat
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RE: Will PTVs Ever Be Standard In The US?

Fri Jul 01, 2011 5:56 pm

The key impetus for PTVs was the improvement in finances. DL initally was going to to place PTVs on the ex NW airbus but with the ramp up in fuel they are backing off that.
 
CO777DAL
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RE: Will PTVs Ever Be Standard In The US?

Fri Jul 01, 2011 6:23 pm

On mainline CO and all new CO orders yes! All mainline CO except the 737-500 will have PTVs before SOC. 757-300 start this year. I have no idea what will happen with PMUA aircraft.
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roseflyer
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RE: Will PTVs Ever Be Standard In The US?

Fri Jul 01, 2011 6:40 pm

At CO, they are getting them because they have an agreement with LiveTV. PTVs generate revenue since they charge for use. LiveTV is paying for the installation costs of the PTVs and is taking all the revenue. CO benefits because their passengers now have PTVs that they can use yet CO doesn't have to pay for anything except extra fuel because of the weight, LiveTV expands its business and earns money. It is a win-win situation.
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BMI727
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RE: Will PTVs Ever Be Standard In The US?

Fri Jul 01, 2011 7:02 pm

Quoting washingtonian (Thread starter):
Will PTVs ever be standard on domestic carriers in the United States?

No, even Southwest is just leapfrogging the televisions. It's hard to say when we will see the peak of personal TVs, but it might be about now. Eventually airlines will just go with the lighter, simpler, less complicated, and more flexible inflight wi-fi systems. Passengers would have freedom to bring whatever devices they like and would have infinitely more options than even the best current AVOD systems. Why give the passengers maybe 30 movies when they can stream whatever they like? And airlines would be more than happy to replace 100+ TVs and all of the associated wiring, which isn't always reliable, with a relatively simpler wi-fi system.
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brilondon
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RE: Will PTVs Ever Be Standard In The US?

Sat Jul 02, 2011 4:32 pm

I don't think much of the current PTV system in the U.S., as you alluded to Wifi seems to be taking over as the predominent entertainment choice. I much prefer my laptop to any of the entertainment options on the tiny little screens that do not as advertised have a wide selection of movies. I don't need a wide selection of movies to keep me entertained, I would just like movies that I want to watch.

Quoting washingtonian (Thread starter):
I believe jetBlue is the only airline to have PTVs in its E-190 fleet (roughly the same size as the C-series), but it hasn't become widespread on E-jets.



AC has PTV's on their E190's and E175's.
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