APEX Insight: SkyLights is releasing a new virtual reality headset in partnership with Twentieth Century Fox. Called Bravo, the headset will provide passengers with an immersive cinematic experience in VR. Rollout of the device has already been planned for two airlines and a fleet of private jets by the end of the year, with three more airlines conducting pilot campaigns of the product.
In-flight virtual reality (VR) is here. By the end of the year, SkyLights, in partnership with Twentieth Century Fox, will be introducing a new headset with VR capabilities on two airlines, with more to be rolled out on a fleet of private jets.
“In-flight entertainment faces a turning point in its history.” — Vincent Tomasoni, XL Airways
The headset, called Bravo, is an update of a previous model, SkyLights Theater, which offers an immersive fixed-screen viewing experience in 2-D, 3-D and 360-degrees. French leisure carrier XL Airways has been testing the product on flights to Antilles and Réunion Island since February. Although the headset had motion-tracking capabilities at the time, it had to be tested for the possibility of motion sickness in flight. With Bravo, that technology can now be kicked into high gear. The headset has also been updated with a new finish, added capability for wireless streaming, a new graphical user interface (GUI) and multilingual audio and subtitle support.
“In-flight entertainment faces a turning point in its history,” says Vincent Tomasoni, XL Airways’ head of Product Marketing. “SkyLights’ product allows passengers to immerse themselves into a cocoon: their own movie theater, at 36,000 feet from the ground. That is a disruptive innovation that could change the way we travel by plane. We will continue to work with SkyLights and hope to agree on permanent commercialization by the end of the year,” Tomasoni said in August.
Traction for Bravo is picking up. In addition to the two airlines that will make Bravo available on board, three airlines are conducting pilot campaigns.