American Airlines has premiered a wide variety of on-demand entertainment content, including movies, TV shows, games and electronic newspapers and books, packaged in a new, hand-held Personal Entertainment Device. This inflight entertainment concept will be tested on select flights in several markets during the next three months as part of American’s ongoing effort to provide customers what they value.
“We are very excited to share this new solution with our passengers as they evaluate the latest in inflight entertainment,” said Mary McKee, Managing Director - Inflight Products for American Airlines. “We believe our customers will value the ability to choose from a wide selection of entertainment options and will find that their flight is too short to enjoy all that these devices offer. The content is designed to have broad appeal - from the seasoned road warrior to families flying with their children.”
The easy-to-use technology allows American to offer a large selection of entertainment options including:
? Early-window movies (after-theater release, but before DVD or video release)
? Music videos
? American’s award-winning inflight audio programming - 12 channels offering a variety of musical genres and business programs
? TV comedy and drama programming, such as Cheers, Law & Order, and Without a Trace
? Animated children’s programs
? Digital newspapers
? Audio book excerpts
? Card games, such as Solitaire and Black Jack
The lightweight, portable devices have an 8.9” wide Super Video Graphic Array (SVGA) Liquid Crystal Display (LCD) screen, support continuous play with a battery life of approximately five hours and offer two output headphone jacks.
During take-off and landing, the devices will be housed in a special cart that doubles as a content loading and charging docking station while on the ground. Digital newspapers will be updated daily and other content, including movies and TV programs, will be updated on a regular basis. The secure, digitally encrypted content will be stored on the hard drive of each device.
During the test, the devices will be distributed at no charge to passengers in the First Class cabin. Passengers in the Main cabin can rent the devices for a fee of $10 to $12 (depending on the market) by simply swiping their credit card on the portable unit. All of the “on demand” entertainment options will be available for that one flat fee. There will be no cash transactions for the devices.
The units will be available in selected Chicago/Los Angeles, DFW/Seattle, Fort Lauderdale/Los Angeles and Chicago/Seattle routes. The test will run through early February, 2005.