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Concorde001
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New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Wed Mar 04, 2015 8:54 pm

Just saw this online:

New Seat Designs From British Airways That We Really Hope Will Fly

British Airways has filed a patent application for a number of seating innovations which could revolutionize the design of aircraft cabins.

The airline known for establishing new standards in comfort — the first to introduce full lie-flat seats in First class and Business class cabins — has of late fallen a bit behind its peers, particularly in its Business class product. But, as we’ve learned, the airline has only been biding its time and working behind the scenes not just to catch up but to leap far ahead.


[Edited 2015-03-04 13:06:58 by concorde001]
 
LHRFlyer
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RE: New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Wed Mar 04, 2015 10:16 pm

Quoting bagoldex (Reply 1):
It's nothing more than a rehash of the shit product they have offered for the last 15 years.

That's a rather uncharitable description of a product that completely reset the benchmark for long-haul business class and prompted almost every long-haul airline in the world to (eventually) introduce flat beds.

The dilemma for BA is they have the demand to full eight seats across in business class. And any decrease in density has to be compensated for by an increase in yield.
 
gkirk
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RE: New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Wed Mar 04, 2015 10:42 pm

You now need to pay for seat selection as well, through all classes I believe?
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YouGeeElWhy
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RE: New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Wed Mar 04, 2015 10:47 pm

Just adopt the JAL sky suite. They would only lose one seat and everyone would gain aisle access.
 
eastern747
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RE: New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Wed Mar 04, 2015 10:47 pm

I'm sorry but rear facing seats are the pits, AWLFUL. I was forced to do it once going from ORD-LHR. I was towards the rear of J and I spent most of the flight playing eye contact with people in coach. It was very uneasy. Perhaps they should give us a shot and put us to sleep. Then they can load us like they did on the slave ships.
 
B747forever
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RE: New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Wed Mar 04, 2015 10:58 pm

Quoting LHRFlyer (Reply 2):
hat's a rather uncharitable description of a product that completely reset the benchmark for long-haul business class and prompted almost every long-haul airline in the world to (eventually) introduce flat beds.

That was when they introduced their J seats. BA cannot live off old merits. They have to bring their product up to the same standards as their competitors. Look at AA and their 77W. They have managed a 1-2-1 configuration.
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Bongodog1964
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RE: New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Wed Mar 04, 2015 11:11 pm

Quoting EASTERN747 (Reply 5):
I'm sorry but rear facing seats are the pits, AWLFUL. I was forced to do it once going from ORD-LHR. I was towards the rear of J and I spent most of the flight playing eye contact with people in coach.

How did you manage that ? Firstly they pull the curtains soon after takeoff, secondly the rear facing seats are on the outside and in the middle of the centre section so you would have to see through the aisle seat to look into the next section, and thirdly on all bar the mid J 744's WTP is next to ClubWorld, not economy. I often choose the last row of J as it offers direct aisle access without stepping over legs, so i can assure you that eye contaxt with coach from those seats is nigh on impossible.
 
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TedToToe
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RE: New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Wed Mar 04, 2015 11:26 pm

Quoting YouGeeElWhy (Reply 4):


Just adopt the JAL sky suite. They would only lose one seat and everyone would gain aisle access.


Personally, having tried the JAL sky suite four times (company policy on carrier) I find it far too claustrophobic. Give me the latest ANA offering, any day! As for BA, yes it needs an update, but I have no objection to flying backwards and when I'm travelling with Mrs T, the two centre seats are ideal.
 
eastern747
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RE: New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Thu Mar 05, 2015 12:40 am

Well if I have to be called out let me explain I was in the seat. Take off, landing and F/A's coming through the curtain. It was not a 747. I'm not stuffy, and don't care if those folks were y+ or y. I felt like I was on a bus with the wall side seat .There was nobody next to me, otherwise I would have moved.
 
Beatyair
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RE: New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Thu Mar 05, 2015 4:18 am

First Class is stupid now! You can't even taught to your traveling companion anymore, you are separated into cattle stalls. I liked the big chairs with the legroom.
 
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LAXintl
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RE: New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Thu Mar 05, 2015 4:29 am

This is actually kinda old. Design concept was out last summer

BA Patent - New Long Haul J Seats? (by NZ107 Aug 24 2014 in Civil Aviation)

=
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SKAirbus
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RE: New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Thu Mar 05, 2015 8:49 am

Their current product in J is awful... Very little storage and incredibly narrow around the shoulder area. It is outdated and needs to be replaced with something more competitive. Unfortunately BA has transitioned to being an airline obsessed with volume.. I flew J in one of their recently refurbished A320s the other day... Although the middle seat was blocked off, the leg room was terrible. Basically... pack in as many seats as you can.

The only exception to the rule when it comes to their products being competitive is F on the A380. I flew this on Saturday back from LAX and it was brilliant... Unfortunately the Mixed Fleet crew operating the flight lacked a lot in the way of personality and rushed me through my meal but the hard product was great... much more space, a lot of privacy and quite obvious they weren't trying to pack as many seats as possible into the cabin.
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offloaded
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RE: New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Thu Mar 05, 2015 9:59 am

Quoting gkirk (Reply 3):
You now need to pay for seat selection as well, through all classes I believe?

F, A - First / J, C, D, R, I - Club / W, E, T - WT Plus / Y, B, H K M L V S N Q O G - Econ

F, A, J, C, W, Y are free to everyone.

D, R, I, E, T, B and below are free to Prem, Gold and Silver card holders at time of booking, (or OW equivalent) also Bronze if booked within 7 days of travel.

The exception seems to be the new short haul HBO ( hand bag only) fares, where everyone pays if you don't like the seats you've been assigned.
To no one will we sell, or deny, or delay, right or justice - Magna Carta, 1215
 
stratacruiser
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RE: New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Thu Mar 05, 2015 10:10 am

I've flown in business class seats on BA and many of the Star alliance carriers, and still find UA's ex-CO BusinessFirst seat design to be among the best. All forward facing, roomy in the shoulder area, very comfortable to sleep in when fully flat, and perfectly adequate storage space for the things you want accessible on a long flight.

Dave
 
aviationaware
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RE: New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Thu Mar 05, 2015 10:19 am

Quoting LHRFlyer (Reply 2):
That's a rather uncharitable description of a product that completely reset the benchmark for long-haul business class and prompted almost every long-haul airline in the world to (eventually) introduce flat beds.

You do notice your use of past tense in your post, do you? It's rather unadvisable to rest on past achievements. Look at Mercedes. The pride themselves to be the inventor of the car in their adverts, yet they have not the slightest clue about the future of mobility. They are being left on the curb. So will BA if they bathe in their past glory.
 
steve6666
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RE: New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Thu Mar 05, 2015 11:37 am

Quoting AviationAware (Reply 15):
It's rather unadvisable to rest on past achievements. Look at Mercedes. The pride themselves to be the inventor of the car in their adverts, yet they have not the slightest clue about the future of mobility. They are being left on the curb. So will BA if they bathe in their past glory.

This is true, but being realistic, I don't think they are in that position quite yet. Not while AA still has 45 772s with what could politely be referred to as a torture contraption masquerading as a J class seat, and EK has a mishmash of long haul J class hard products, many of which are still not lie-flat. Until that has gone happens, then give me 8 across and yin-yang every time.

However, I do agree that there needs to be a fairly urgent programme before the end of the decade to reconfigure and update and that 1-2-1 in J is basically the only way to go. Essentially, the new AA seat in the 77W beats anything BA can offer in J hands down. The corollary to J taking much more floor area, is, unfortunately 10 across in Y. I'm surprised they seem to be waiting for the introduction of the A350s before embarking on this - it seems to me an open and shut case.
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rta
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RE: New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Thu Mar 05, 2015 11:51 am

Quoting steve6666 (Reply 16):
This is true, but being realistic, I don't think they are in that position quite yet. Not while AA still has 45 772s with what could politely be referred to as a torture contraption masquerading as a J class seat

Agreed. At least for right now, BA is consistent. I wouldn't compare them as such.

I booked AA57 this summer thinking it would be a 77W (as per the timetable) but it looks like it's now one of AA's older 772's. It's still the same flight, according to AA, but the product is very, very different.
 
BlueShamu330s
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RE: New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Thu Mar 05, 2015 12:06 pm

Quoting B747forever (Reply 6):
That was when they introduced their J seats. BA cannot live off old merits. They have to bring their product up to the same standards as their competitors. Look at AA and their 77W. They have managed a 1-2-1 configuration.

Have you flown many J class sectors recently to make the comparison? They don't have to do anything yet.

Quoting EASTERN747 (Reply 5):
I'm sorry but rear facing seats are the pits, AWLFUL. I was forced to do it once going from ORD-LHR. I was towards the rear of J and I spent most of the flight playing eye contact with people in coach. It was very uneasy. Perhaps they should give us a shot and put us to sleep. Then they can load us like they did on the slave ships.

Not sure how you managed that.

Quoting Bongodog1964 (Reply 7):
How did you manage that ? Firstly they pull the curtains soon after takeoff, secondly the rear facing seats are on the outside and in the middle of the centre section so you would have to see through the aisle seat to look into the next section, and thirdly on all bar the mid J 744's WTP is next to ClubWorld, not economy. I often choose the last row of J as it offers direct aisle access without stepping over legs, so i can assure you that eye contaxt with coach from those seats is nigh on impossible.

My thoughts also.

Quoting SKAirbus (Reply 12):
Their current product in J is awful..

BA pioneered the lie flat.

It makes me laugh that some people claim BA J to be the most awful thing flying. Yet get this, BA premium loads are approaching record levels again whilst revenue is also actually increasing. So, there's no discounting to fill those awful, privacy invading, totally unacceptable horrible seats; people are choosing to fly BA in their droves.

That's not to say BA should be apathetic moving forward and these plans show they are not. However, it is not the case that BA need to be ripping out their current offerings just yet.

Rgds
Flying around India
 
SKAirbus
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RE: New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Thu Mar 05, 2015 1:03 pm

Quoting BlueShamu330s (Reply 18):
It makes me laugh that some people claim BA J to be the most awful thing flying. Yet get this, BA premium loads are approaching record levels again whilst revenue is also actually increasing. So, there's no discounting to fill those awful, privacy invading, totally unacceptable horrible seats; people are choosing to fly BA in their droves.

Firstly, I think the Executive Club has a lot to do with that. People want their tier points and avios. Secondly, BA have a near monopoly at LHR and without transiting, BA offer the majority of longer routes. It doesn't mean their J product has to be brilliant... CX has a far superior J product as does SQ, JL and now even AA (on their new and refurbished 777s/787s).
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FoxBravo
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RE: New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Thu Mar 05, 2015 2:10 pm

Different strokes for different folks. Put me in a rear-facing BA J window seat and I'm happy, especially on the upper deck of a 744. For sleeping, I still say it's the best business class seat I've found, and I include SQ, CX, new AA, UA ex-CO, and DL in that comparison (putting aside food and other "soft product" elements of course). A comfortable bed and total privacy, with tons of leg space and no cramped footwell when reclined, and the "Sleeper Service" with pre-flight dining in the lounge is the icing on the cake.

Not to say that it couldn't be improved--lack of direct aisle access (unless you're in the last row, which I usually try to get) being the obvious shortcoming at this stage. But it's hardly uncompetitive.
Common sense is not so common. -Voltaire
 
vv701
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RE: New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Thu Mar 05, 2015 4:07 pm

Quoting bagoldex (Reply 1):
It's nothing more than a rehash of the shit product they have offered for the last 15 years.

That product, launched nearly 15 years ago on 29 March 2000 on one of BA's daily LHR-JFK flights, was the first lie-flat J Class seat fitted into any airline's fleet. So a little less than 15 years ago every other airline's J Class product was inferior to that of BA.

The problem with being a market leader and trend setter is that your competition will look at what you have done and then copy it adding their own improvements. No doubt this is why in January 2007 BA again took the lead by introducing their second generation J Class lie-flat seat. It was installed across both their 744 and 772 fleets over the following 3.5 years.

BA first offered their lie-flat J Class seat on all flights between LHR and JFK from July 2000. It was offered on all their long-haul flights from just over three years later. However it was not until just under a year ago that their partner airlines in the Atlantic Joint Business, AA/US, caught up and offered a lie-flat J Class seat on all of their flights between LHR and the USA. Naturally they chose to install what was then the latest design of J Class seat.

BA have just posted an operating profit of €1.2 billion for 2014 without a period in Chapter 11 protection to help them get there. So clearly they have been doing something right.
 
B747forever
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RE: New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Thu Mar 05, 2015 4:13 pm

Quoting VV701 (Reply 20):
BA have just posted an operating profit of €1.2 billion for 2014 without a period in Chapter 11 protection to help them get there. So clearly they have been doing something right.

Not Ch11 but much thanks to the situation at LHR, and the lack of UK competition.
Work Hard, Fly Right
 
B747-4U3
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RE: New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Thu Mar 05, 2015 4:13 pm

Quoting EASTERN747 (Reply 4):
I'm sorry but rear facing seats are the pits, AWLFUL. I was forced to do it once going from ORD-LHR. I was towards the rear of J and I spent most of the flight playing eye contact with people in coach. It was very uneasy. Perhaps they should give us a shot and put us to sleep. Then they can load us like they did on the slave ships.

Most of my long haul travel has been in Club World and I can't say I have ever experienced anything approaching what you have stated, other that when I was in a forward facing aisle seat and physically turned around to look at those in World Traveller.

Quoting SKAirbus (Reply 11):

Their current product in J is awful... Very little storage and incredibly narrow around the shoulder area. It is outdated and needs to be replaced with something more competitive

It is not the best product in the World, but to say it is awful is not entirely fair. A lot of airlines still do not offer a fully flat bed in Business class. Even the likes of Emirates and Qatar Airways (who have some superb products) do not consistently offer a fully flat bed on all long haul flights. BA may not be the best, but at least you can be guaranteed a fully flat seat.

Quoting FoxBravo (Reply 19):
Put me in a rear-facing BA J window seat and I'm happy, especially on the upper deck of a 744.

Me too!

Quoting FoxBravo (Reply 19):
Not to say that it couldn't be improved--lack of direct aisle access (unless you're in the last row, which I usually try to get) being the obvious shortcoming at this stage. But it's hardly uncompetitive.

From the diagrams, it looks like that is what they are trying to do - offer a similar seat to now but with direct aisle access. I'd imagine that BA have done a lot of research and I'd imagine that satisfaction with the current seat is sufficiently good enough to keep the same concept, but that feedback has shown the biggest bugbear is a lack of direct aisle access.


I know we all have our travelling preferences, but I find it amusing looking at some of the abuse that BA Club World gets. There are obviously better products - I personally think the new CX product is top notch - but consider some others:

EY - 330 /340 very narrow aisles and seats.
EK - still angled flat on a lot of LH and ULH flights
QR - angled lie flat on 330 and no direct aisle access on the new seats.
KL/ UA / CA - no direct aisle access depending on aircraft
KE - no direct aisle access on older product, not fully flat on all aircraft
LH - still use angled lie flat, not direct aisle access on newer aircraft.
 
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N62NA
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RE: New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Thu Mar 05, 2015 5:32 pm

Quoting EASTERN747 (Reply 4):
I'm sorry but rear facing seats are the pits, AWLFUL.

I agree.

Quoting B747forever (Reply 5):
BA cannot live off old merits. They have to bring their product up to the same standards as their competitors. Look at AA and their 77W.

But... AA is going backwards with their rear facing J seats on the 772. Why they couldn't just use the same seat for J that they used in the 77W is beyond me. Perhaps they can squeeze in more with the rear-facing seats and the 772 will be used on not-so-premium routes.

Quoting steve6666 (Reply 15):
AA still has 45 772s with what could politely be referred to as a torture contraption masquerading as a J class seat

They are all getting the "new" (front / rear facing) J seats in the next year or two.

Quoting BlueShamu330s (Reply 17):
BA premium loads are approaching record levels again

Perhaps because coach is so awful, and not because BA J is so good?
 
MonsieurX
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RE: New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Thu Mar 05, 2015 7:05 pm

Quoting N62NA (Reply 23):
Perhaps because coach is so awful, and not because BA J is so good?

I'd be very interested to see the people who decide that they simply don't like the look of the economy seat, and so immediately stump up the very significant upgrade to Club because 'what the hell'...

X
 
vv701
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RE: New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Thu Mar 05, 2015 7:30 pm

Quoting B747forever (Reply 21):
Not Ch11 but much thanks to the situation at LHR, and the lack of UK competition

Lack of competition? BA has 51 per cent of LHR slots. It faces more competition at LHR than any other major airline faces at a major hub excepting only UA at ORD. There AA has a significant presence just as VS has a sign ifican t presence at its hub, LHR .

Also remember Europe's two largest and longest established LCCs, FR and U2. Both have their largest bases at LON airports.

It can be argued that BA owes the strength of its current financial position because it was exposed to and learnt to counter direct competition from what is now Europe's largest airline measured by passengers carried, FR. That competition dates back to the establishment of its STN base in the early 1990s. Competition from Europe's second largest LCC, U2, dates from around five years later. That is long before any of the continental European LCCs were established.

The LCC competition back then created lots of problems for BA. They shrunk their business focussing on their LHR operations. Indeed the number of passengers BA carry have only just got back to the levels of around 15 years ago. It was going to sink or swim. It found the way to swim and only after a single fairly financially disastrous year. And over this period it had to cope with the traffic decline bought about by first 9/11 and later the Credit Crunch.
 
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N62NA
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RE: New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Thu Mar 05, 2015 8:37 pm

Quoting MonsieurX (Reply 24):
I'd be very interested to see the people who decide that they simply don't like the look of the economy seat, and so immediately stump up the very significant upgrade to Club because 'what the hell'...

Probably just takes one flight in coach for a person to make up his or her mind. If they can afford it (or their company will pay for it), I can definitely see people vowing "never again" to coach.
 
FoxBravo
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RE: New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Thu Mar 05, 2015 10:10 pm

Quoting B747-4U3 (Reply 22):
From the diagrams, it looks like that is what they are trying to do - offer a similar seat to now but with direct aisle access. I'd imagine that BA have done a lot of research and I'd imagine that satisfaction with the current seat is sufficiently good enough to keep the same concept, but that feedback has shown the biggest bugbear is a lack of direct aisle access.

That was my reaction too. I am confident that whatever BA comes up with next will be a very high quality product.

Quoting B747-4U3 (Reply 22):
There are obviously better products - I personally think the new CX product is top notch

I would agree that the CX seat (which is basically the same as AA's on the 77W, and an increasing number of other airlines) might be the best all-round design. My only complaint is that, in the fully reclined position, my head feels a bit exposed to the aisle and I'm more likely to be disturbed by a passing person/cart/etc. So I actually sleep more soundly on BA. But the CX seat definitely wins for storage space and other features
Common sense is not so common. -Voltaire
 
a380787
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RE: New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Thu Mar 05, 2015 10:18 pm

Quoting B747-4U3 (Reply 22):


EY - 330 /340 very narrow aisles and seats.
EK - still angled flat on a lot of LH and ULH flights
QR - angled lie flat on 330 and no direct aisle access on the new seats.
KL/ UA / CA - no direct aisle access depending on aircraft
KE - no direct aisle access on older product, not fully flat on all aircraft
LH - still use angled lie flat, not direct aisle access on newer aircraft.

There's quite a bit of misinformation here.

EY uses Solstys on many 340/77W, which is 1-2-1 and reasonably comfortable (except for lounging)

UA doesn't have ANY J config with all aisle access

LH is rapidly converting to flat bed (but still 2-2-2). LH subsidiaries LX and OS are 100% flat though.
 
29erUSA187
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RE: New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Thu Mar 05, 2015 10:20 pm

Quoting VV701 (Reply 20):
BA have just posted an operating profit of €1.2 billion for 2014 without a period in Chapter 11 protection to help them get there. So clearly they have been doing something right.

Boom. Argument. Over

On the other hand. I honestly dont understand how people are complaining about flying J, no matter the airline. Come visit me back in Y on your next 11hr, Longhaul flight, then try to complain.
 
B747-4U3
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RE: New Seat Design Concepts From British Airways

Fri Mar 06, 2015 4:53 pm

Quoting a380787 (Reply 28):
There's quite a bit of misinformation here.

EY uses Solstys on many 340/77W, which is 1-2-1 and reasonably comfortable (except for lounging)

That doesn't detract from the fact that the aisles on the 330 are narrow due to the seat design and cabin width. How is that misinformation?

BTW - I like Etihad's seat and product.

Quoting a380787 (Reply 28):
UA doesn't have ANY J config with all aisle access

True - my point wasn't very clearly made. The point I was making was that people are quick to point out BA's deficiencies but seem to ignore those of other airlines. The fact that UA don't have any J product with direct aisle access demonstrates the point - BA is "awful" because it doesn't offer direct aisle access - but what about all of the other products out there?

Quoting a380787 (Reply 28):
LH is rapidly converting to flat bed (but still 2-2-2). LH subsidiaries LX and OS are 100% flat though.

Which is what I have said. Angled lie flat and on newer aircraft, flat but not direct aisle access.

I may not have been overly clear in the way I made my point, but to suggest it is "quite a bit of misinformation" is an unreasonable point.

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