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April 7, 2017



Today's Top Stories



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


An Electric Future for Regional Air Travel?

Boeing and JetBlue Technology Ventures are investing in an electric-powered aircraft startup that hopes to one day transform short-haul air travel. Named after the Mayan word for hummingbird, Zunum Aero is planning to build a fleet of hybrid electric passenger jets that could appeal to airlines servicing densely traveled regional routes and could drastically lower operating costs without the need for fueling. The Kirkland, Washington-based company plans to initially launch an aircraft in the early 2020s with capacity for 10 passengers and a range of 700 miles on a single charge. As electric battery technology improves, Zunum hopes to build larger aircraft with capacity for 50 passengers and a 1,000-mile range.

The Verge | Related [VIDEO] Fuel-less flights are on the horizon – USA Today



Emirates Introduces Complimentary Microsoft Surface Tablets for Premium Pax

Emirates has furthered its efforts to mitigate the effects of the US electronics device ban by loaning laptops to first- and business-class passengers on board all non-stop flights from Dubai to the US. The Gulf carrier’s premium passengers will be able to use complimentary Microsoft Surface tablets equipped with Microsoft Office 2016 for the duration of their flight. Before boarding, customers can download their work onto USB flash drives, which can then be plugged into the tablets for a seamless workflow. Etihad Airways and Qatar Airways began offering a similar service earlier this week for its first- and business-class passengers, with the latter airline additionally offering one hour of free in-flight Wi-Fi connectivity.

Fortune | Related APEX Calls for Immediate Solutions to Electronics Ban – APEX Media



B/E Aerospace Confirms Economy Seat Deal With United Airlines

B/E Aerospace has secured a deal to supply United Airlines with economy-class seating for some of its Airbus and Boeing aircraft. The cabin interiors company says it will deliver its Aspire seating platform for the carrier’s upcoming 787-10 and A350 fleets, in addition to retrofitting the seating product on its existing 777-200s. United will also equip its forthcoming 737 MAX 9s with B/E Aerospace’s Meridian seat. “We selected B/E’s Aspire and Meridian cabin seating with our customers in mind,” says Mark Krolick, United Airlines’ VP of Marketing. “Our customers tell us they want comfort and space, and these seats will help us deliver on our commitment to create a pleasant flying experience.”

Business Traveller | Related Exclusive: Rockwell to win EU approval for B/E Aero takeover – Reuters



Ryanair Says It Will Be Forced to Suspend All UK Flights Without Early Brexit Deal

Ryanair says it will have to halt flights from the UK for “weeks or months” if the British government does not secure an early bilateral Brexit deal for international aviation. The low-cost carrier’s CFO, Neil Sorahan, says the suspension of flights from London’s Stansted and other airports was “a very distinct possibility,” adding that “In the worst-case scenario, there will be no flights in or out of the UK to Europe for a period, for all carriers.” Ryanair now plans to pivot away from Britain, revising its planned UK growth of 15 percent down to six percent, adding that it was exploring possibilities of expanding operations in Scandinavia and Germany, where it only has 20 aircraft.

The Guardian | Related [VIDEO] Ryanair Calls on Politicians to Think About “The Consumer in The Middle” of the Brexit Debate – Bloomberg



BA Announces Major Investment in Its Premium PaxEx

British Airways has unveiled a series of enhancements to its in-flight and on-the-ground services. The changes primarily apply to BA’s premium passengers through a planned $500-million investment in its long-haul Club World business class. This will cover improvements to catering in the airline’s business lounges at London Heathrow, new bed linen for its lie-flat seats and an overhaul to its premium onboard dining offering. A separate $110-million investment will be used to improve its US lounge facilities. BA adds it’s also developing options for a new Club World seat with direct aisle access to debut in 2019.

Air Transport World | Related First look: the British Airways M&S On Board menu – Business Traveller



Haute Cuisine: Air France Launches Signature Dishes By Chef Michel Roth

Air France will be offering two-star Michelin chef Michel Roth’s signature dishes to its long-haul business-class passengers over the next three months. On flights departing from Paris, passengers will be able to choose from main dishes such as braised beef tenderloin, onion asparagus and carrot mousseline with mustard (in April); and pollack, mussel juice with lemon zest, mixed green vegetables (in May). The latest culinary offerings are part of Air France’s program of regularly changing menus by renowned chefs. Two new dishes will be offered each month until the end of June.




Trading Spaces: Could Modular Aircraft Cabins Allow Airlines to Swap More Than Just Seats?

Modular aircraft cabin designs ensure that seats aren’t the only furnishings being swapped on board. Proponents say swappable aircraft interiors could cut reconfiguration time for airlines from several weeks to mere minutes. Airbus-owned Silicon Valley startup A3 and TU Delft are two of the companies trailblazing this radical approach to aircraft cabin design. “You might be surprised how difficult it is to change aircraft cabin layouts ... Even moving a bathroom forward or backward a few feet can kick off extensive structural engineering and testing work," says Jason Chua, a project executive at A3. “It’s clear that there’s an appetite for more choice and customization among all stakeholders that are helping to shape commercial flight.”

APEX Media | Related Premium Real Estate: How Seating Innovations Alter Cabin-Space Economies – APEX Media




Photo of the Day

Krisworld IFE on board an SIA Airbus A350. Can you guess the movie? Captured by @dirktraveller (via Instagram).

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


> Tweet of the Day

Snakes, puppies and many other animals... Intern Julie meets them all at KLM's Animal Hotel!

Royal Dutch Airlines @KLM


Association News

Registration Is Open for APEX TECH!

APEX TECH delivers information, guidance, analysis and trend reporting on technology issues critical to the aviation industry, including connectivity, cybersecurity, closed captioning and accessibility. This year’s APEX TECH will take place on June 13–14 at the Sheraton Gateway Los Angeles Hotel. The two-day event will provide a forum for the industry’s technical experts to review and discuss the APEX Technology Committee’s ongoing projects that set the specifications and standards for new passenger experience technologies. Click here to register.


Sponsorship Opportunities at APEX Events

Are you looking to gain extra exposure for your company at APEX events like APEX MultiMedia Market, APEX TECH and APEX EXPO? APEX has the right marketing opportunity for your company. Contact Desiray Young,, to discuss the best ways to raise your company’s profile. For more information, see the 2017 Sponsorship and Advertising Kit.


> Quote of the Day

“I want to make beautiful things, even if nobody cares, as opposed to ugly things. That’s my intent.”

Saul Bass, designer of the United Airlines "U" logo


Until next week



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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