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In-Flight Wireless Entertainment Cleared for Take-off, According to IMS Research

In-Flight Wireless Entertainment Cleared for Take-off, According to IMS Research

Global Wireless Entertainment Install-Base to Grow from around 80 in 2011 to nearly 9,000 by 2021

Largely only a trial offering today, wireless in-flight entertainment (IFE) is forecasted to reach a global install-base of nearly 9,000 aircraft by 2021, revolutionizing how passengers are entertained, able to communicate outside of the plane, and manage their on-going travel, according to a new report by IMS Research (recently acquired by IHS Inc. (NYSE:IHS)), a leading supplier of market research and consultancy to the global electronics industry.

“In-flight Wi-Fi and cellular communication is becoming increasingly common, particularly in the US, and today 1,000s of aircraft are fitted with equipment that allows passengers to connect to the internet,” says Alastair Hayfield, Research Director, IMS Research. “Today US airlines like SouthWest and Delta are offering in-flight internet access. However, the aim for many airlines is to be able to offer many other services wirelessly, vastly improving the travelling experience for everyone.”

At the moment, traditional IFE is usually available in the seat back or from the cabin roof. However, a new wireless solution is emerging that is removing the need for cabling, and removing the need for ‘fixed’ IFE systems altogether. Wireless IFE – sometimes known as wireless content distribution – beams media such as video, TV, games and audio, around the cabin to be received on passengers’ tablets, smartphones, or airlines’ own handheld devices.

Benefits of Wireless IFE to airlines include:

  • Delivering better in-flight customer service by enabling passengers to check on-going connecting flight information, gate numbers, make hotel reservations, book theatre tickets, and research and plan-ahead sight-seeing or other entertainment activities
  • Achieving weight reduction and overall economy by removing seat-back systems and wiring
  • The opportunity to create a new revenue stream by charging passengers for wireless IFE access
  • And the facility for budget airlines like Easyjet and Ryanair – currently with no IFE service – the ability to offer new, value-added services

“The inevitable take-off of wireless IFE has clear benefits to both the industry and passengers alike,” Hayfield adds. “Until very recently we have all been cut-off from the outside world when flying, dependent on a limited program of entertainment, or reliant upon our own media. But very soon we will all be able to access not only online content, but be able to communicate with family, friends and colleagues, keep tabs on on-going travel plans – anticipate and contingency-plan around potentially missed flights or delays.”

About the report “The Future of Wireless IFE – World – 2012 Edition”

“The Future of Wireless IFE – World – 2012” is a new report tracking this potentially ‘game-changing’ aerospace technology. The report tracks the current and future penetration of wireless IFE systems over the next ten years, with analysis by aircraft type, region, connectivity, and flight duration.

About IHS Inc. (www.ihs.com)

IHS (NYSE: IHS) is the leading source of information, insight and analytics in critical areas that shape today’s business landscape. Businesses and governments in more than 165 countries around the globe rely on the comprehensive content, expert independent analysis and flexible delivery methods of IHS to make high-impact decisions and develop strategies with speed and confidence. IHS has been in business since 1959 and became a publicly traded company on the New York Stock Exchange in 2005. Headquartered in Englewood, Colorado, USA, IHS employs more than 5,600 people in more than 30 countries around the world.

About IMS Research:

IMS Research is a leading independent supplier of market research and consultancy to the global electronics industry, offering syndicated market studies, custom research and consultancy services. Clients include most of the household names in the industry. IMS Research has offices in Europe, the US, China, Taiwan, South Korea, and Japan. To find out more, contact IMS Research: enquiries@imsresearch.com; T: +44 (0) 1933 402255;http://imsresearch.com

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