Miamiairport
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Mon May 20, 2019 11:59 am

My guess is that AA isn't going to reverse the decision on IFE but anything's possible. IFE in itself isn't going to drive higher revenues. DL likely looks at IFE (AVOD) as a cost of branding. Projecting the image that we care about you the customer.
 
UpNAWAy
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Mon May 20, 2019 1:43 pm

I can't see it happening. One I think it was the correct decision, 2 it would take 3-5 years just to get that installed and think how outdated current tech will be by then. And as someone else has mentioned can the Meridian seats even take seatback screens? If not that requires a new domestic seat and that unlikely because there are so few MFGers and so little capacity to get that kind of quantity of new seats.

Avoid doesn't always satisfy customers in fact it can be a source of great frustration.
I have been on about 5-6 flights with avoid. My screen didn't work on 2 of those. They also are one of the top overall delay drivers (extremely costly) and bring huge MX cost too, needing work almost daily. The only way I could see this being reversed is some new technology or co-branding with a tablet MFGer or something like that.
 
ikramerica
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Mon May 20, 2019 1:52 pm

afcjets wrote:
77H wrote:
I don’t understand what the obsession with PTVs is? What did you all do on flights before airlines started to put them in?

77H


Watched the movie playing on the big screen

Im not young but transcons have had IFE since Ive been alive. Movie projectors, sound tube headphones. OAG guide had a little camera symbol for IFE flights.

Removing IFE is going back 50 years. Progress?
Of all the things to worry about... the Wookie has no pants.
 
UpNAWAy
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Mon May 20, 2019 2:13 pm

There still is IFE, In fact with live tv the options have never been better. The only contention is the delivery method.
 
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einsteinboricua
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Mon May 20, 2019 2:20 pm

It's the same thing I fault WN on: deploy more seat power and I wouldn't care whether it's Wifi or PTV. But to think that a small device can last 3-4 hours without charging it is ridiculous. Devices are now being sold with more battery life, but they assume regular usage and not extended. It's quite likely that if you get to the airport in time, while you're waiting to board, you'll be on your device. Depending on flight length, the device may not make it through (I now carry a battery pack for my phone because it always drops below 30%).

Some of AA's fleet (namely the legacy A32X) really needs to be refurbished, though if I am to believe SeatGuru, it seems the A319 fleet has been refurbished to include power at every seat, leaving only the A320s and some legacy A321s needing seat power.
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sagechan
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Mon May 20, 2019 2:30 pm

USAirALB wrote:
https://twitter.com/xJonNYC/status/1129939690197573632

Anyone want to take a crack at that rumor? If it doesn't mean Amazon (which someone had suggested) I am stumped. I usually take "A through Z" to mean "to include everything".


Based on Jon's follow up tweets I'm guess the rumor is AA is looking at a streaming seat back tablet that's being codeveloped by Apple and Zodiac.
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fpetrutiu
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Mon May 20, 2019 2:33 pm

UpNAWAy wrote:
There still is IFE, In fact with live tv the options have never been better. The only contention is the delivery method.


Agreed, but I think it comes down to preference. For me, I much prefer an one-seat PTV over any other device. I don't want to be holding anything and it frees up the limited space on the tray for me to do some work, eat or whatever.

Also, how about those that don't have a tablet?

So, yes there are those that prefer to use their own devices, but the PTV's don't stop you. Why would anyone argue it is a good idea to rip them out because they don't use them? Others most definitely are. It is kind of selfish, don't you think? I don't use it, so why would anyone use it...
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millionsofmiles
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Mon May 20, 2019 5:06 pm

einsteinboricua wrote:
It's the same thing I fault WN on: deploy more seat power and I wouldn't care whether it's Wifi or PTV. But to think that a small device can last 3-4 hours without charging it is ridiculous. Devices are now being sold with more battery life, but they assume regular usage and not extended. It's quite likely that if you get to the airport in time, while you're waiting to board, you'll be on your device. Depending on flight length, the device may not make it through (I now carry a battery pack for my phone because it always drops below 30%).

Some of AA's fleet (namely the legacy A32X) really needs to be refurbished, though if I am to believe SeatGuru, it seems the A319 fleet has been refurbished to include power at every seat, leaving only the A320s and some legacy A321s needing seat power.


The 319s have power at every seat, including the LUS ones.
 
slowrambler
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Mon May 20, 2019 6:55 pm

Antarius wrote:
slowrambler wrote:
USAirALB wrote:
https://twitter.com/xJonNYC/status/1129939690197573632

Anyone want to take a crack at that rumor?


I'm really just not impressed by this "battle for the soul" kind of rhetoric. It always seems to be wielded by people fantasizing about the luxuriousness of an imaginary standalone AA.


Yes and no. AA was a full service carrier, despite doing a pretty piss poor job of it, resulting in bankruptcy. US Airways was unabashedly a low cost carrier; their stock ticker was LCC. As a result, there is a legit question of what the "soul" of AA is and that can occur independently of recognizing that standalone AA wasn't an exemplary stalwarth under Arpey.


Ticker symbol notwithstanding, US was a full service carrier, which in quite a few cases - TATL Y and J, for example - provided a product better than AA's on its own terms. (One example: US had direct-aisle-access lie flats in business two years before AA did.) It might not be too wrong to say that the core of the soul of "old" AA is that they couldn't recognize this, because they were a Premium Airline and thus automatically the Best by definition.
 
USAirALB
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Mon May 20, 2019 7:08 pm

slowrambler wrote:
Antarius wrote:
slowrambler wrote:

I'm really just not impressed by this "battle for the soul" kind of rhetoric. It always seems to be wielded by people fantasizing about the luxuriousness of an imaginary standalone AA.


Yes and no. AA was a full service carrier, despite doing a pretty piss poor job of it, resulting in bankruptcy. US Airways was unabashedly a low cost carrier; their stock ticker was LCC. As a result, there is a legit question of what the "soul" of AA is and that can occur independently of recognizing that standalone AA wasn't an exemplary stalwarth under Arpey.


Ticker symbol notwithstanding, US was a full service carrier, which in quite a few cases - TATL Y and J, for example - provided a product better than AA's on its own terms. (One example: US had direct-aisle-access lie flats in business two years before AA did.) It might not be too wrong to say that the core of the soul of "old" AA is that they couldn't recognize this, because they were a Premium Airline and thus automatically the Best by definition.

One specific thing I remember US did in Y was offer a full hot pre-arrival meal on CLT-Brazil A330 flights whereas AA just dished out a croissant.

I always thought US catering was really good. Sure they only offered meals on F flights over 3h30m but the quality was far superior than today’s AA meals.
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row44seatk
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Tue May 21, 2019 3:31 pm

AA just announced today (Tues, May 21st) that they are suspending the "Oasis Refresh" according to Lucky over at One Mile At a Time. Maybe indefinitely !!!
Hell, somebody has to sit in that seat.
 
Ishrion
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Tue May 21, 2019 3:47 pm

https://onemileatatime.com/american-sus ... h-program/

Oasis conversions officially put on hold until 2020.

Nothing on IFEs but it’s nice to see.
 
graham697
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Tue May 21, 2019 3:58 pm

Honestly, maybe they should partner with Apple to develop a lightweight/futuristic IFE system. Utilize iPads and their existing DMA software that many in the entertainment industry already trusts.

Go after Delta/Gogo with a solution from a company that they already have a Music partnership with and has a stellar reputation with most American consumers. The Apple of a few years ago may not have wasted their time, but with their current core market under pressure seems like this could be a worthy partnership.
 
Detroit313
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Tue May 21, 2019 4:03 pm

What do you mean "bring back"? The title is completely wrong.

They haven't removed screens from any narrow body plane yet.

All the 737s that have been retrofitted didn't have individual screens in the first place. Only the ones coming down the ceiling to play the movie or safety video.
 
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itripreport
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Tue May 21, 2019 4:05 pm

UpNAWAy wrote:
And as someone else has mentioned can the Meridian seats even take seatback screens? I.


Air Canda, Aeromexico, Fiji, Copa (only economy plus) Garuda, Jetblue's V2 and a few other airlines have meridian seats with IFE installed.
 
Ishrion
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Tue May 21, 2019 4:08 pm

Detroit313 wrote:
What do you mean "bring back"? The title is completely wrong.

They haven't removed screens from any narrow body plane yet.

All the 737s that have been retrofitted didn't have individual screens in the first place. Only the ones coming down the ceiling to play the movie or safety video.


Bring back meaning bringing the IFEs to aircraft that don’t already have them. I referenced that they haven’t removed any IFEs from existing aircraft in the first post.
 
miaami
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Wed May 22, 2019 3:09 am

Ishrion wrote:
https://onemileatatime.com/american-suspends-737-refresh-program/

Oasis conversions officially put on hold until 2020.

Nothing on IFEs but it’s nice to see.



There must be some changes coming to the Oasis project if its on hold until next year. My guess it has nothing to do with IFE but something to improve the F/C cabin.
 
USAirKid
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Wed May 22, 2019 3:30 am

miaami wrote:
Ishrion wrote:
https://onemileatatime.com/american-suspends-737-refresh-program/

Oasis conversions officially put on hold until 2020.

Nothing on IFEs but it’s nice to see.



There must be some changes coming to the Oasis project if its on hold until next year. My guess it has nothing to do with IFE but something to improve the F/C cabin.


One of the biggest drivers that AA named for this was the grounding of the 737MAX.

The delay to 2020 might just be to ensure that they have enough cushion to get the 737MAXes back flying. I wouldn't be surprised if they've had to pay cancellation fees to the contractors who were planning on working on reconfiguring planes to OASIS, but don't have work since the MAXes are grounded.
 
apodino
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Wed May 22, 2019 4:26 am

Ishrion wrote:
https://onemileatatime.com/american-suspends-737-refresh-program/

Oasis conversions officially put on hold until 2020.

Nothing on IFEs but it’s nice to see.

I want to point out one thing. This is only a suspension on the 737 fleet due to the MAX issues. The Airbus fleet is still scheduled for the refurbishments starting with the LUS 321s I believe. This will start in the fall.
 
9w748capt
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Sun May 26, 2019 12:29 am

apodino wrote:
Ishrion wrote:
https://onemileatatime.com/american-suspends-737-refresh-program/

Oasis conversions officially put on hold until 2020.

Nothing on IFEs but it’s nice to see.

I want to point out one thing. This is only a suspension on the 737 fleet due to the MAX issues. The Airbus fleet is still scheduled for the refurbishments starting with the LUS 321s I believe. This will start in the fall.


That's just what they're saying publicly. They're not gonna be like "sorry everyone we know we suck and our product is trash", though that would be quite refreshing if LCC management actually admitted as much.
 
acavpics
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Tue May 28, 2019 4:40 am

Let’s say this does turn out to be true. Approximately how long would it take AA to install IFE in all of the appropriate aircrafts?
 
cm642
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Tue May 28, 2019 5:23 am

For myself "jamesinclair" on flyertalk personally summed up about his perception and mine about the importance of IFE on planes!

Link: https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/american-airlines-aadvantage/1935429-how-long-til-will-reverse-no-seatback-ife-decision-13.html


by: jamesinclair

A lot of the conversation about IFE tends to revolve around personal use.

Person 1: I dont use IFE so AA is right in removing it.
Person 2: I use IFE so AA is wrong in removing it.

Im Person 2. However, I think IFE also plays a larger role in perception of the brand at large.

Imagine you check into a nice hotel and the TV offered is a 30 inch CRT from 1998. Straight off the bat, that will leave you with a negative impression of the hotel, even if you dont ever plan on turning it on.

Why? It sends the message that the hotel is cheap.

And lets be real. Nobody likes when things feel cheap. Yes, we all like paying less, but people expect a certain level of luxury.

IFE is the same thing. You walk onto a Delta or Jetblue plane and it feels modern and high tech and dare I say it, fancy. That leaves a good impression. Again, doesnt matter if you dont use IFE, the fact that it exists means the company is doing things to make your trip better.

On the other hand, a plane without IFE feels old and cheap. Doesnt matter if the plane is brand new, it looks more like a Greyhound than a jet.

We are in a capitalist society that essentially runs on perception. Brands spend billions on marketing in order to ensure that people associate their brand with positive feelings. They do it because it works.

AA management was clearly hungover the day they taught those case studies in business school.

"But look at Spirit". Yeah, their whole business model is cheap. Thats fine. You CAN run a successful business on being cheap as possible. Walmart intentionally uses ugly shelving and harsh lighting to send the message that theyre cheap because they want people to associate the brand with low prices. But Walmart sells 79 cent sodas, not $9,000 business class seats to Japan. You cant have it both ways.
 
blacksoviet
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Tue May 28, 2019 5:48 am

When did American remove the ceiling-mounted CRT monitors?
 
strfyr51
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Tue May 28, 2019 5:54 am

I think eventually that all the majors will be rocking seat back Videos and even on line stuff to allow Laptops and other portable devices to connect to in flight internet, #1? Its a revenue stream, #2? people have asked for it. #3? I can see them returning to catering full meals as it will add yet another revenue stream.
 
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compensateme
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Tue May 28, 2019 7:24 am

blacksoviet wrote:
When did American remove the ceiling-mounted CRT monitors?


When they retired Windows 98 SE?
We don’t care what your next flight is.
 
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EA CO AS
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Tue May 28, 2019 10:08 am

cm642 wrote:
On the other hand, a plane without IFE feels old and cheap. Doesnt matter if the plane is brand new, it looks more like a Greyhound than a jet


The problem is, when you have a fleet that doesn't have seatback IFE already installed, the cost is around $1M per airframe, and that's before the added cost of extra weight, not to mention that a seatback platform is a service failure waiting to happen. To me, while I freely admit I love a good in-seat monitor, I also understand the economics that justify either not having IFE at all, or at least offering a streaming service to any wifi-enabled device AND providing in-seat power at every seat.

Seatback IFE is really like entering the proverbial "arms race" of the fancy whiz-bang lie-flat products you'll find some airlines offering on premium routes, where the airline will eventually, after a period of no more than 10 years, need to replace them with the latest and greatest iteration on the market to keep up with the Joneses, and those costs per aircraft are likely to keep going up, not down, as technology evolves from 6" screens to 10" screens to 15" screens or beyond.

The carriers that opt for free streaming IFE libraries to any wifi-enabled device will be able to sit out all that costly one-upping.
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mfe777
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Tue May 28, 2019 3:38 pm

cm642 wrote:
For myself "jamesinclair" on flyertalk personally summed up about his perception and mine about the importance of IFE on planes!

Link: https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/american-airlines-aadvantage/1935429-how-long-til-will-reverse-no-seatback-ife-decision-13.html


by: jamesinclair

A lot of the conversation about IFE tends to revolve around personal use.

Person 1: I dont use IFE so AA is right in removing it.
Person 2: I use IFE so AA is wrong in removing it.

Im Person 2. However, I think IFE also plays a larger role in perception of the brand at large.

Imagine you check into a nice hotel and the TV offered is a 30 inch CRT from 1998. Straight off the bat, that will leave you with a negative impression of the hotel, even if you dont ever plan on turning it on.

Why? It sends the message that the hotel is cheap.

And lets be real. Nobody likes when things feel cheap. Yes, we all like paying less, but people expect a certain level of luxury.

IFE is the same thing. You walk onto a Delta or Jetblue plane and it feels modern and high tech and dare I say it, fancy. That leaves a good impression. Again, doesnt matter if you dont use IFE, the fact that it exists means the company is doing things to make your trip better.

On the other hand, a plane without IFE feels old and cheap. Doesnt matter if the plane is brand new, it looks more like a Greyhound than a jet.

We are in a capitalist society that essentially runs on perception. Brands spend billions on marketing in order to ensure that people associate their brand with positive feelings. They do it because it works.

AA management was clearly hungover the day they taught those case studies in business school.

"But look at Spirit". Yeah, their whole business model is cheap. Thats fine. You CAN run a successful business on being cheap as possible. Walmart intentionally uses ugly shelving and harsh lighting to send the message that theyre cheap because they want people to associate the brand with low prices. But Walmart sells 79 cent sodas, not $9,000 business class seats to Japan. You cant have it both ways.


THIS! Yes! Dougie still probably doesn't get it, though. "But it costs more, and more is more than less!" Hopefully they get the picture and halt the Oasis refresh permanently. It doesn't matter how many people Spirit attracts, they will never be able to sell $9k biz class fares up front in their planes. People love Southwest but even if they created a premium cabin, I doubt they could capture the same fares as a Delta.
 
OB1504
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Tue May 28, 2019 4:17 pm

EA CO AS wrote:
The carriers that opt for free streaming IFE libraries to any wifi-enabled device will be able to sit out all that costly one-upping.


If AA continues to refuse to invest in an industry leading product, then they can also sit out commanding a revenue premium versus Delta.
 
9w748capt
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Tue May 28, 2019 4:23 pm

EA CO AS wrote:
cm642 wrote:
On the other hand, a plane without IFE feels old and cheap. Doesnt matter if the plane is brand new, it looks more like a Greyhound than a jet


The problem is, when you have a fleet that doesn't have seatback IFE already installed, the cost is around $1M per airframe, and that's before the added cost of extra weight, not to mention that a seatback platform is a service failure waiting to happen. To me, while I freely admit I love a good in-seat monitor, I also understand the economics that justify either not having IFE at all, or at least offering a streaming service to any wifi-enabled device AND providing in-seat power at every seat.

Seatback IFE is really like entering the proverbial "arms race" of the fancy whiz-bang lie-flat products you'll find some airlines offering on premium routes, where the airline will eventually, after a period of no more than 10 years, need to replace them with the latest and greatest iteration on the market to keep up with the Joneses, and those costs per aircraft are likely to keep going up, not down, as technology evolves from 6" screens to 10" screens to 15" screens or beyond.

The carriers that opt for free streaming IFE libraries to any wifi-enabled device will be able to sit out all that costly one-upping.


Supposedly the new system DL installed on the A220s is significantly cheaper, which probably is a big reason why AA is taking another look. I don't know if your analogy to business class is correct. Once you have IFE, it's appreciated. Even AA's old system with that grainy 6 inch screen and video "nearly on demand" was better than nothing.

Clearly there is some value in having IFE. DL management has been proven to be much sharper than the rest of us, and yet they continue to invest in IFE. Why would they do that if there weren't any returns to be had from that investment?
 
MSPNWA
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Tue May 28, 2019 5:35 pm

OB1504 wrote:
If AA continues to refuse to invest in an industry leading product, then they can also sit out commanding a revenue premium versus Delta.


The problem with that belief is that there's no concrete evidence that tells us mainline domestic PTVs make a statistically significant empirical contribution to a revenue premium. The only known to PTVs is that there's added cost. It's not a known that any added revenue makes up for it or surpasses it. If there was, we'd expect basically every airline to have it.

AA can make plenty of money without domestic mainline PTVs, as shown by WN, UA, AS, NK, F9, etc., etc. Interestingly AA's revenue yield is only a hair behind DL's--17.93 cents versus 18.12 cents in 2018. So the people that are flying AA are paying nearly as much per mile.

9w748capt wrote:
Clearly there is some value in having IFE. DL management has been proven to be much sharper than the rest of us, and yet they continue to invest in IFE. Why would they do that if there weren't any returns to be had from that investment?


Clearly there is some value in PTVs? How do we know?

Airlines make mistakes all the time. They also don't make every decision based on a known positive return. Could DL's decision be margin-positive? Yes. Could it be the opposite? Also yes.
 
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pitbosflyer
Posts: 347
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Re: Rumor: American Airlines To Bring Back Seatback IFEs On Domestic Aircraft

Tue May 28, 2019 5:57 pm

EA CO AS wrote:

The problem is, when you have a fleet that doesn't have seatback IFE already installed, the cost is around $1M per airframe, and that's before the added cost of extra weight, not to mention that a seatback platform is a service failure waiting to happen. To me, while I freely admit I love a good in-seat monitor, I also understand the economics that justify either not having IFE at all, or at least offering a streaming service to any wifi-enabled device AND providing in-seat power at every seat.


The fancy lie flat seats is a good example of why AA is likely rethinking their IFE decision. Much like with lie flats on US transcons. All the majors were forced to put lieflats on transcon to compete with B6 Mint because the customer didn't see any reason paying the same for less of a hard product.

I think AA is worried DL might be able to market and leverage their IFE in much the same way. At the same time as DL has been able to supposedly figure out how to put IFE on planes for way cheaper than previous systems. I mean there is even talk of in the future people being able to stream their own Netflix accounts on these new tablet seat back systems. Of course the bandwidth available has to get better on a plane to accomplish this, but things move fast in tech.

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