Aged Boeing 737NG cabins will get the chance to look a lot brighter and newer – and offer more overhead bin space – now that the US airframer has opted to offer the Boeing Sky Interior (BSI) as a retrofit package.
“The Boeing Sky Interior is currently offerable for retrofit on 737NG aircraft,” a Boeing spokesman recently revealed to RGN Premium.
The Boeing Sky Interior (BSI), launched in 2010 on new 737NGs, has been hugely popular with airlines and passengers alike. In addition to offering bins that pivot up and out of the way, sculpted sidewalls and other features, the Boeing Sky Interior uses LED lighting in the cabin to give the appearance of a soft blue sky overhead.
Boeing’s decision to wait a few years before offering BSI as a retrofit option to airlines opened up an opportunity for Zodiac’s Heath Tecna to offer its new ‘Project Amber’ pivot bin interior to the retrofit market. Project Amber is similar to BSI, and Heath Tecna has been securing customers for the interior, including in the US.
“There are a couple different ways for Boeing to offer BSI to the retrofit market,” notes an aircraft interiors insider. “It can offer the bins, the sidewalls, the lighting, etc, which is an expensive modification with a large scope. But some carriers won’t necessarily want to offer the entire package, and will select only the lighting as a cost efficient way to have a BSI effect and bring a sense of consistency to their 737 fleet.”
He adds, “In talking to BSI operators, they said a couple of things that I found interesting. One operator said that when they introduced BSI, the number of complaints about the older aircraft went up. Boeing 737NGs that yesterday were fine, suddenly looked aged.”
Southwest Airlines is among the 737 operators that have previously expressed an interest in retrofitting 737NGs with BSI.