Since the beginning of March, Dutch flagship carrier KLM has been actively trialling the AirFi box portable inflight entertainment (IFE) solution onboard Boeing B737 passenger aircraft serving the carrier’s daily flights between Amsterdam Schiphol Airport and Madrid, and Amsterdam Schiphol Airport and Istanbul.
Through to early summer, passengers flying these selected KLM flights can use their personal mobile devices to connect to a free onboard Wi-Fi network created by AirFi boxes and positioned throughout the cabin in overhead bins. Once connected, passengers enter a 100% KLM-branded environment called ‘KLM in the Cloud’. There, they are free to enjoy newspapers, get destination information, browse a retail selection, chat seat-to-seat, join the KLM frequent flyer program or visit the Kid’s Place – with short videos featuring KLM’s popular jumbo-jet personality, Bluey.
“The KLM-AirFi pilot brings content on board, without the need to make aircraft modifications. The feedback from the first weeks, both from our crew and responses to our survey, shows the interest of our customers. The ‘KLM in the Cloud’ platform functioned from day one and was welcomed by our passengers, and AirFi continues to make adjustments to the setup and usability,” commented Joost Blom, Project Manager – Product Innovation Inflight at KLM.
“At the moment we have no embedded IFE on our single isle fleet, so adding a form of entertainment would expand our offer on our European routes. BYOD [bring your own device] is something our customers are doing regardless of our offer: people bring their devices loaded with entertainment and consume that during the flight,” he added.
During the four-month trial period, KLM will evaluate the content delivery capabilities, data collection opportunities, passenger uptake and operational feasibility of the AirFi portable IFE devices.
“The light and portable AirFi closed-network IFE streaming concept isn’t just for low-cost or holiday carriers,” says Job Heimerikx, CEO of AirFi. “Every airline can benefit from better digital services, more entertainment options and a means by which to stay connected to the traveller throughout his or her journey. It doesn’t have to be a drawn out affair. We can get an airline up and running with its own branded, closed-network streaming entertainment solution in mere weeks.”
IN OTHER AIRFI NEWS:
AirFi, will launch a new generation of hardware at Aircraft Interiors International in Hamburg.
Like the incumbent Moon AirFi Box (re-branded from AirFi Box), the new Venus box enables airlines to stream a wide variety of engaging content to passengers’ own mobile devices inflight. This content can include newspapers
magazines in multiple languages, HTML 5 games, onboard chat, crew interface functions, video, payment portals and more.
The new hardware solution, also offers a series of improvements over its predecessor.
“The Venus AirFi Box is robust and attractive. New materials and manufacturing techniques enable custom colours (the Moon box is grey) with a tight, durable, and modern design to help it handle the tough job of being a completely portable piece of cabin equipment,” says Job Heimerikx, CEO at AirFi.
Venus also improves on Moon by offering an integrated moving map feature and automated aircraft positioning display – something passengers value and check frequently.
AirFi will showcase the Venus AirFi Box and begin taking orders on stand 2C70 at Aircraft Interiors Expo, April 5-7, in Hamburg. Current and future customers, media and fans of #PaxEx innovation are invited to drop by and learn more, or contact AirFi directly.
KLM Royal Dutch Airlines was founded on 7 October, 1919 to serve the Netherlands and its colonies. KLM is today the oldest airline still operating under its original name. KLM has been part of the AIR FRANCE KLM group since the merger in 2004.
KLM is the core of the KLM Group, which further includes the wholly-owned subsidiaries KLM Cityhopper, transavia.com and Martinair.
Contact: KLM Media Relations, +31 (0)20 64 94545
AirFi brings innovations to the cabin offering the unique platforms “AirFi-box” and “Connected Crew” designed especially for airlines to effectively and securely bridge the information gap between the company and its remote staff and passengers.
AirFi is supported by Mainport Innovation Fund, founded by KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, Schiphol Group, Delft University of Technology and Rabobank.
Contact: Job Heimerikx, CEO AirFi, +31 6 24626585