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November 9, 2016

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Industry News | Comfort & Ambience | Entertainment & Connectivity | Catering & Services

 
 

GEE and Shareco Strengthen Partnership to Boost IFEC in Chinese Airspace

Global Eagle Entertainment (GEE) and Beijing Shareco Technologies, a subsidiary of HNA Group, have entered into a strategic partnership that could see the formation of a joint venture to provide in-flight entertainment and connectivity (IFEC) to HNA’s airlines, which currently operate 320 aircraft. Under the terms of the agreement, Shareco will make an initial equity investment in GEE of $103 million and additional investments after the creation of the joint venture, amounting to a total of $416 million. “The transaction would bring together two industry leaders to accelerate IFEC adoption and improve the passenger experience in China,” said Dave Davis, CEO of GEE. GEE and Shareco partnered in December 2015 to deliver connectivity on Hainan Airlines and Beijing Capital Airlines.

GEE | Related Asia-Pacific’s In-Flight Connectivity Landscape – APEX Media

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Due North? Demand Rises for One-Way Airline Tickets to Canada on US Election Day

Searches in the US for one-way flights to Canada more than doubled on Election Day, according to Cheapflights.com. At 6 p.m. ET, the search volume was 133 percent higher than the average of the past four Tuesdays. "The data so far shows that Canada looks to be the favorite potential safe haven for nervous results watchers," the company said in an e-mail yesterday. Twitter users have come to a similar conclusion after finding that Citizen and Immigration Canada’s website crashed as US election results came in. Cheapflights.com has yet to update its data to see how stats fared following Donald Trump’s early-Wednesday victory.

The Huffington Post | Related Canada's immigration website crashes on election night – CTV News

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Emirates Makes Mobile Visa Applications a Reality

Passengers flying to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) with Emirates can now apply for a visa on their smartphone or tablet. The mobile app, launched by the Dubai Visa Processing Centre (DVPC), allows passengers to apply for 96-hour, 30-day or 90-day single-entry visas following a one-time profile creation. “We are in a constantly evolving environment in terms of developing best-in-class technologies, and with this app, we aim to deliver exceptional levels of service and enhanced convenience for travelers,” said Vinay Malhotra, the global head of DVPC. “The DVPC mobile app will serve as a one-stop shop for UAE visa applicants.”

Travel Daily Media | Related Qatar Airways and Qatar Tourism launch new transit visa – Travel Daily Media

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Singapore Airlines Weighs Boeing and Airbus Designs for Longest Aircraft Ever

Singapore Airlines (SIA) is reportedly expected to select either Boeing’s or Airbus’ design for the world’s longest jet by the end of the year. Airbus' A350-2000 would be nearly 258 feet long and would seat 400 passengers, while Boeing's 777-10X would be 263 feet, with a 450-person capacity. Singapore’s backing would not guarantee that the design will come to fruition: Boeing and Airbus must still demonstrate to their boards of directors that they have enough buyer interest to begin manufacturing. "We discuss fleet requirements with manufacturers on a regular basis, and any such discussions are confidential," said Nicholas Ionides, Singapore Airlines’ vice-president of Public Affairs.

CNN | Related Singapore Air is again flying nonstop to USA from Singapore – USA Today

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Rockwell Collins’ Self-Service Technologies on Offer at YYC

Rockwell Collins’ ARINC common use passenger process solution and ARINC self-service kiosks are streamlining passenger check-in at Calgary International Airport’s (YYC) new international terminal. YYC is also using the company’s managed IT maintenance services, which provide 24-hour on-site, on-call IT support for the airport’s passenger processing systems and related technologies, including automated passport control kiosks and baggage handling solutions. “The ARINC technologies at YYC provide the foundation for the airport’s commitment to enabling self-service travel,” said Christopher Forrest, vice-president, Airport Systems at Rockwell Collins. “The new terminal positions YYC to handle passengers’ needs today and for decades to come.”

Skies | Related New $2B international terminal at Calgary airport takes off – CBC

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Airlines and OTAs Go Head-to-Head in Airfare Transparency Tussle

The US Department of Transportation has issued a request for information regarding airlines’ practice of restricting online travel agencies (OTA) from accessing airfares and flight schedules. A group called the Travel Technology Association, which advocates increased transparency and competition in the air travel industry, has brought the issue to the government’s attention, but airlines are fighting back. “Dictating to the airline industry distribution and commercial practices would only benefit those third parties who distribute tickets, not the flying public,” Airlines for America president Nicholas Calio said in a written statement.

USA Today | Related New Distribution Capabilities to Streamline the Search for Airfares – APEX Media

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Meet the Robots Transforming the Airport Experience

Robots are finding a place in airports, helping passengers check in and navigate maze-like terminals. Haneda Airport is home to three humanoid robots, Nao, Pepper and EMIEW3, which can interact with passengers in multiple languages. SITA’s Leo, a self-service kiosk on wheels, facilitates the check-in process at Geneva Airport and KLM’s Spencer scans passengers’ boarding passes and guides them to their gate at Amsterdam Airport Schiphol. Whether by answering frequently asked questions or transporting passengers’ luggage, robots are sure to alleviate pain points throughout the journey.

APEX Media | Related At Your Service: Robotic Helpers Take Off at Airports – APEX Media

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> PHOTO OF THE DAY

 
Photo of the Day
 

A Boeing 777-300ER calls it a night at Toronto Pearson International Airport. Captured by @dangyrzone (via Instagram).

Use #APEXPOTD for the chance to be featured in the APEX Daily Experience newsletter!

 
 

> Tweet of the Day

Momentous challenges lie ahead to heal the divide and reinvigorate the belief and faith in the political system: http://virg.in/dgMA0

Richard Branson @richardbranson

 
 
 

Association News

APEX's Official Airline Ratings

APEX will soon launch its Official Airline Ratings program, in partnership with TripIt from Concur. The ratings initiative, which will allow passengers using the TripIt app to rate their flights on a five-star scale, is designed to offer the airline industry a unique platform to collect passenger ratings and verify data in order to measure the passenger experience. Ratings collected through to July 2017 will be used to determine award winners for outstanding performance in five categories: seat comfort, Wi-Fi, entertainment, cabin service and food and beverage. Ratings and awards will be announced annually at APEX EXPO.

 
 

APEX 2017 Events Are Just Around the Corner!

APEX events offer unique and valuable forums for airline passenger experience industry experts and newcomers alike to gain technical knowledge, acquire professional development skills and explore the latest industry trends. APEX EXPO, MultiMedia Market, APEX TECH and regional conferences are just some of the industry events that bring together airlines, buyers and suppliers in order to improve the passenger experience. Click here for more information on upcoming APEX events.

 
 
 
 

> Quote of the Day

“Together we stand, united we soar.”

 
 

Until tomorrow

 
 

ABOUT APEX

The Airline Passenger Experience Association (APEX) encompasses a network of airlines, businesses and professionals that are committed to providing a world-class airline experience for passengers around the globe. Every day, APEX members are improving every aspect of the airline experience, from designing, building and installing seating, entertainment and communications systems on commercial aircraft, to airport lounges and in-flight dining. Visit apex.aero for more information. APEX is professionally managed by Kellen Company, the premier global association management firm with offices and representation in the United States, Europe, China, the Middle East, India and Southeast Asia.

 
 

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