Posted on: 09 March 2011 by Mark Howells
Lufthansa Systems has revealed its new IFE system, BoardConnect, at this year’s ITB event claiming it will offer the next generation in on-board communication.German carrier, Condor, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Thomas Cook, has been announced as the first airline to install BoardConnect on its Boeing 767 aircraft.The innovative infotainment system is based on a WiFi network which passengers can log on to through seat-back screens or their own laptops, tablet PCs, smart phones or other WiFi-enabled devices to access a wide range of video and audio on demand, games, internet, e-mail and interact with friends on social networks. BoardConnect also makes it possible for airlines to offer new forms of customer communication, information and services, providing airlines with additional revenue streams and the ability to customise their contact with each passenger.Head of Project Management and Marketing at Condor Flugdienst GmbH, Rainer Kröpke said, "In-flight entertainment is an important part of the travel experience and a way to stand out from the competition, particularly in the tourism industry. BoardConnect opens up entirely new possibilities for us.”BoardConnect does not need to be wired into every seat. For example, the cabin of a Boeing 767 will only need five access points which are connected to a central server."The system is much easier to install because there is no wiring required. It can be integrated during a regular maintenance check, so there’s no need for extra downtime," claimed Dr. Jörg Liebe, CIO of Lufthansa Systems AG. "BoardConnect is also very reliable and gives airlines maximum flexibility as regards cabin rearrangement, the integration of new technologies and the development of new services."Lufthansa Systems state that with the elimination of wiring and data distribution hardware, weight savings of nearly half a ton can be achieved for a Boeing 767-300, reducing annual fuel consumption by around 20 tonnes per aircraft.Lufthansa Systems developed BoardConnect from its Mobile Infotainment System found on cruise ships and is adaptable across a number of transportation sectors.