The timeframe is suppose to be from 2018-2021 for both the 737-800 and A321-200. I still don't understand why they are getting rid of the PTVs but at least the seats will finally get power.
The argument the execs make about removing the PTVs remains the same, that by the time it would take to retrofit the entire fleet that they'd be obsolete. So they figured instead of wasting money on a product that would be obsolete by completion, that they invest in faster WiFi for all aircraft that will allow free movie streaming to personal devices, as well as fast enough internet to allow streaming of Netflix/HBO GO type services.
It would be interesting to know if there is a revenue component to the argument that isn't being communicated. With PTV I bet customer perception/expectation is to have lots of free content whereas they can more easily charge for Wifi access? Or they are getting more of a cut of revenue from the Wifi provider? Personally, I'm ok with just the Wifi especially if it opens up a little bit of space under the seat or anything. I do like however when you can track your flight on the screen but I'm geeky like that.
AA doesn't charge for the entertainment portion of the Streaming IFE, have to pay for access to internet beyond aa.com
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