APEX 2013: Lufthansa selects BoardConnect for narrow-bodies

Lufthansa Systems has had the BoardConnect wireless IFE system selected by its parent company for the airline's Airbus A321 fleet.

Twenty of the aircraft are to be fitted with BoardConnect in the summer of 2014 after successful trials. The system gives passengers wireless access to a wide range of content, which is then streamed to their own smartphone, tablet or laptop.

BoardConnect comprises a single server and wireless access points that support the very latest 802.11 ac standard. Lufthansa Systems says that this is quite capable of streaming content to 250 passengers in parallel.

The content can include an interactive moving map, books, newspapers and magazines, plus video on demand. Up to date late-window movie content can also be streamed thanks to DRM technology. Most devices can have an app for the movies installed on the aircraft, apart from Apple iOS, which must have the app downloaded before passengers join the flight.

The system uses active bandwidth management to ensure that each device gets the right data rate. Lufthansa Systems also announced a new shopping module for BoardConnect that allows passengers to browse a catalogue and make a selection, so boosting ancillary revenues.

Norbert Müller, senior vice president, BoardConnect, said: "Lufthansa's decision makes us very proud and is yet more proof of the numerous advantages our innovative technology offers. Compared with legacy IFE systems BoardConnect holds the potential for significant savings across the board."

Steve Nichols, Inflight / Inflight-Online.com
Anaheim, CA, USA

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