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February 21, 2017



Today's Top Stories



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


Uncalled For: Americans Voice Strong Opposition to In-Flight Cellphone Usage

The US Department of Transportation’s proposal to maintain a ban on in-flight phone calls received more than 7,000 comments. The proposal comes after the Federal Communications Commission put forward a rule change that would permit in-flight cellphone calls. However, public feedback was nearly unanimous in its strong opposition to the idea of allowing passengers to make phone calls at 35,000 feet and even cabin crewmembers were opposed. “Personal space is a major component in sparking confrontations between passengers,” wrote Waynetta Keeling, a Texas resident and flight attendant of 33 years.

Los Angeles Times | Related DOT: Airlines should notify flyers if they allow voice calls in flight – USA Today



Qantas Reports Wi-Fi Speeds Up to 12 Mbps After In-Flight Tests

Qantas has completed the first real-world trial of its long-awaited in-flight connectivity system on board one of its Boeing 737s. The three-hour charter flight between Sydney and Brisbane carried staff who volunteered to test the system under typical in-flight usage conditions. Early signs appear encouraging, with passengers reporting Wi-Fi download speeds ranging from 7 Mbps to 12 Mbps for each connected device. Passengers on the test flight were assigned tasks such as downloading apps, streaming movies and music, sending e-mails and testing the system’s content filters.

Australian Business Traveller | Related Qantas new fast Wi-Fi service will offer streaming services Foxtel, Netflix and Spotify on domestic flights for free – Traveller



Intruder Alert: Industry Experts Weigh In on Cybersecurity Risks

In the age of the connected aircraft, keeping sensitive data – that of passengers and airlines alike – secure is key. According to experts from Kontron, Thales and Rockwell Collins, reducing the risk of cyberattacks is about achieving a balance between passengers’ needs and cybersecurity best practices. “The biggest value you’re going to get out of the travel experience will come from some sort of data exchange,” says RJ McLaren, manager of Product Marketing at Kontron. It is because of this exchange that 100-percent prevention is “nearly impossible, and ultimately impractical,” explains Sam Miller, product security officer at Thales Avionics InFlyt Experience. The goal is real-time detection that sniffs for new threats even as those threats emerge for the first time.

APEX Media | Related Experts warn hackers could ruin millions of holidays –



Astronics CEO Says the Company Over-Forecast 2016 Sales Growth

Astronics says it has learned important lessons after over-forecasting its 2016 sales. CEO Peter Gundermann said the company was $60 million short of achieving its estimated sales goal of $594 million last year, explaining that the company had not anticipated sales to drop for its antenna systems and VVIP aircraft installations. He also cited lower demand for the company’s in-seat electrical power outlets and seat-motion systems. Astronics’ Electrical Power and Motion division achieved growth of 3.1 percent in 2016, instead of the 12 to 15 percent anticipated. “I’d like to think we’re one year older and one year smarter,” said Gundermann while issuing the guidance for 2017 sales growth.

Runway Girl Network | Related Astronics posts 4Q profit – Yahoo Finance



JetBlue “Blueprints” One-of-a-Kind Livery on an Embraer E190

JetBlue has unveiled a special livery on one of its Embraer E190s in addition to a new tailfin design that will appear on multiple aircraft later this year. The “Blueprint” paint job, created in celebration of the New York-based carrier’s 17th anniversary, showcases the details of the aircraft blueprint such as the nose gear, jet engine and yoke. JetBlue’s design team says it drew on diagrams of various aviation, nautical and space exploration vehicles to create “a mechanical x-ray of sorts” that mixes with the airline’s sense of fun. “Our design team has done an outstanding job of visually telling a JetBlue story through their fresh and creative lens,” said Jamie Perry, JetBlue’s vice-president of Marketing.

USA Today | Related JetBlue is third US airline to reduce capacity to Cuba – USA Today



Cathay Pacific Brews a Beer That’s Made for Drinking Above the Clouds

Cathay Pacific has introduced a new beer by Hong Kong Beer Co. brewed specifically for drinking at 35,000 feet. Called Betsy, the beer is named in honor of the carrier’s first ever aircraft, a Douglas DC-3, and celebrates the flavors of the UK and Hong Kong. With taste senses dulled up to 30 percent in high-altitude pressurized cabins, Cathay’s in-flight ale is brewed with “Dragon Eye” fruit from Hong Kong markets, locally sourced honey and English Fuggle hops. While the airline claims Betsy is “the world’s first beer brewed specially for 35,000 feet,” SAS partnered with Danish brewers Mikkeller in 2014 to create a range of beers specifically for drinking in pressurized cabins.

Duty Free Hunter | Related Craft Beer Takes Flight: Airlines Hop On Board the Brewing Revolution – APEX Media



Air France Rolls Out Business- and First-Class Amenity Kits

After rolling out premium economy goody bags last month, Air France has introduced new business- and first-class amenity kits for long-haul passengers. The business-class kits come in blue, gray, orange and turquoise, feature two suede pockets and contain a lip balm, dental kit, eye mask, earplugs, comb, shoehorn and a Clarins moisturizer. The first-class La Premiere kits are offered in light blue or orange and contain Carita cosmetics, including face cream, eye cream, hand cream and lip balm, as well as earplugs, a comb and a pen.

Business Traveller | Related Air France giving "sleep suit" to first-class customers – Travel Weekly




Photo of the Day

Air Canada's new livery. Captured by @brianlosito (via Instagram).

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


> Tweet of the Day

We’re celebrating 10 years of our #WestJetCaresforKids program! What does this mean? A lot. Here’s the math.

WestJet @WestJet


Association News

#APEXMARKET: CSPs Attending With Airline Delegates Will Receive Registration Refund

APEX MultiMedia Market 2017, the only global industry event focused specifically on bringing together IFE buyers with the leading worldwide content vendors, will take place in Berlin from April 24 to 26. The three-day event includes exhibits, education sessions and networking opportunities. Content service providers that attend with an airline delegate will be refunded the registration fee of $350. Click here to register.


Speak Up! Submit Your Session Proposals for APEX Events

APEX is accepting proposals from members to speak at its events: MultiMedia Market, EXPO, TECH and Middle East Conference. APEX is known for shaping the future of the passenger experience – and it’s because of you! We want you involved at this year’s APEX events. This is a chance for you and your company to be front and center – or if you are not interested in presenting but would like to see a topic addressed, now is the time to speak up! Click here to submit a proposal.



Do you have experience with film, television and music licensing and understand how to write, review and negotiate contracts? Spafax, one of the world’s leading providers of inflight entertainment, content marketing and media solutions is looking for a seasoned professional to manage our business affairs. You’ll work with leading studios, content distributors, music labels and international airline clients to ensure that everyone’s intellectual property, business interests and reputations are protected. Our ideal candidate is an attorney or someone who has spent significant time in a business affairs or legal department and is looking to move into a smaller agency environment. And while we are a smaller company, we do work extensively with large companies around the world. Click here to apply and view all job listings.
> Spafax - Senior Director, Business Affairs Costa Mesa, CA


> Quote of the Day

“There are several other sources of enjoyment in a long voyage, which are of a more reasonable nature. The map of the world ceases to be a blank; it becomes a picture full of the most varied and animated figures.”

Charles Darwin, The Voyage of the Beagle


Until tomorrow



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 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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