Lufthansa trials Board Connect IFE system

25 Jan 2013 by ScottCarey7

Lufthansa is trialling a new in-flight entertainment system called Board Connect on a single Airbus A320 stationed in Munich, serving short and medium-haul routes.

The mobile device enabled system, dubbed My Mediaworld by Lufthansa, allows passengers in business and economy class to watch Hollywood films, read digital newspapers and look up a moving map and information about destinations. The service is available via laptop, tablet computer or smartphones which can connect to the on-board server via an app.

Board Connect is a wireless system working on a regular WLAN connection, allowing carriers to offer a wide range of information and entertainment that can be updated quickly and easily as well as offering online in-flight sales.

This means that Board Connect does not require internet access, as content is streamed from an on-board server to passengers’ devices onboard Lufthansa’s A320. However, if the aircraft itself has an internet antenna, passengers can use Board Connect to access the internet.

The system has been developed by Lufthansa subsidiary company Lufthansa Systems, providing IT solutions for airlines, and has been on trial since December and will finish in February. Virgin Australia and Condor are also trialling the system.

Lufthansa also continues to roll out its Flynet broadband service across its intercontinental network, with the system being installed on over 80 aircraft by the end of 2012. All forthcoming Boeing 747-8s will be pre-equipped with Flynet and the existing four aircraft without the service are due to be retrofitted.

Passengers onboard Flynet-equipped aircraft are also able to stream live sports on the Sport 24 channel. The English-language live sports channel is integrated into a free portal and can be received via wireless LAN (WLAN) on a personal tablet or laptop.

Sport 24 has the broadcast rights for major sports events, including Formula 1 races, the NFL Super Bowl, Wimbledon, the French Open tennis tournament and the Ryder Cup and US Open golf events. It can also stream German Bundesliga and English Premier League football matches. By spring 2013 Sport 24 coverage will be available on all Flynet aircraft.

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Report by Scott Carey

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