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May 11, 2017



Today's Top Stories



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


Farewell to Buffering? We Tested Out Gogo’s 100 Mbps Next-Gen 2Ku

APEX Media was on board Gogo's Boeing 737 test lab this week to try its next-generation 2Ku in-flight Wi-Fi. The verdict: impressive connectivity – comparable to a home broadband connection – thanks to a new modem and Intelsat’s 32e Epic NG high-throughput satellite, which combined, enable speeds of 100 Mbps. Gogo 2Ku is already flying on more than 170 aircraft on airlines including Delta, Aeromexico, GOL and Virgin Australia. The upcoming modem will be installed on all new Gogo-equipped aircraft beginning in the third quarter of this year.

APEX Media | Related Gogo says it wants no parts of satellite ownership – Space News



Boeing Temporarily Suspends 737 MAX Over Engine Defect

Boeing has put a hold on 737 MAX flights due to a potential quality defect in the aircraft’s engines, manufactured by CFM International, a joint venture between General Electric and Safran Aircraft Engines. This comes days before the scheduled first delivery of the new 737 variant to Malindo Air on May 19. A possible manufacturing flaw was detected in the LEAP-1B engine’s low-pressure turbine discs during inspection, but had not impacted flight tests. Boeing maintains that deliveries of the 737 MAX will begin this month as planned. “We’re keeping all of our customers updated on the progress,” said Boeing spokesperson Doug Alder. The 737 MAX is Boeing’s fastest-selling jetliner, with 3,714 orders placed so far.

Bloomberg | Related Primera Air to take up to 20 Boeing 737 MAX 9s – Air Transport World



Pax Satisfaction With North American Airlines at Record High, According to J.D. Power Survey

Passenger satisfaction with North American airlines is at the highest level since J.D. Power began conducting its air travel survey 13 years ago. Despite several high-profile incidents with passengers, and ensuing negative media coverage, the market research company said overall satisfaction improved in 2016 because airlines landed more flights on time, charged lower fees, mishandled fewer baggage items and bumped fewer passengers. Alaska Airlines was rated the top "traditional" carrier for the tenth consecutive year, followed by Delta. Southwest Airlines overtook JetBlue as the highest-rated low-cost carrier. "Our data shows that, as a whole, the airline industry has been making marked improvements in customer satisfaction across a variety of metrics,” said Michael Taylor, J.D. Power’s travel practice lead. “As recent events remind us, however, airlines have significant room for improvement.”

Travel Weekly | Related SITA Baggage Report 2017: Mishandled Luggage Rates Reach Record Low Thanks to Technology – APEX Media



Announcing Airbus Aerial, a Service That Provides Drone Data

Airbus has announced the launch of Airbus Aerial, a new subsidiary that will use small drone technology, high-altitude unmanned aircraft and existing Airbus satellite infrastructure to provide data-captured insights and analyses to customers. The headquarters will be based in Atlanta, Georgia, and will be led by drone expert Jesse Kallman. “Using an integrated combination of assets, from unmanned aerial system platforms to satellite imagery, Airbus Aerial is rolling out a wide range of new imagery services,” said Airbus Defense and Space CEO Dirk Hoke. “In the future, additional pillars of the Airbus Aerial activities will be in the area of cargo drone services as well as providing connectivity via aerial assets.”

Air Transport World | Related ICAO to develop framework for safe management of drone traffic – Travel Daily Media



SilkAir Boosts Movie and TV Catalog on Wireless IFE System

SilkAir, Singapore Airlines’ regional subsidiary, today announced an upgrade to its wireless in-flight entertainment system. SilkAir Studio will now offer passengers more than 100 international movies and 40 television shows, which can be streamed via the airline’s iOS and Android apps, compared to a previous selection of 30 movies and 20 television programs. The new IFE catalog includes blockbusters such as Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, Interstellar, the Lord of the Rings trilogy, The Hobbit and the Harry Potter series. The TV selection includes Modern Family, Fresh Off the Boat and The Big Bang Theory.

SilkAir | Related Air France-KLM inks codeshare deal with Singapore Airlines – Air Transport World



Rossen Dimitrov Returns to WestJet as Chief Guest Experience Officer

Airline industry veteran Rossen Dimitrov will rejoin WestJet after four years with Qatar Airways, where he served as senior vice-president of Customer Experience. Effective May 15, Dimitrov will assume the role of chief guest experience officer at Canada’s second-largest airline, where, from 2011 to 2013, he acted as director of In-Flight Services. During his time at Qatar Airways, Dimitrov helped launch the QSuite business-class product and reported directly to CEO Akbar Al Baker. “[Rossen’s] experience, ability and proven track record with guest experience and hospitality will serve WestJet particularly well as we begin our exciting journey of growth as a long-haul, global carrier,” said Cam Kenyon, WestJet's executive vice-president, Operations.

APEX Media | Related WestJet to launch "ultra-low-cost" no-frills carrier – CBC News



Delta to Reduce Number of Business-Class Seats on Boeing 777 to Make Way for Mini-Suites

Delta Air Lines is planning to reduce the capacity of its business-class cabin on Boeing 777-200s so it can install new suites in the coming years. The Atlanta-based carrier plans to equip its Delta One cabins with 28 lie-flat seats in partitioned mini-suites, nine fewer than its current 37-seat layout. Delta still needs FAA approval because regulations prohibit airlines from having barriers between seats and the aisle during takeoff and landing, although several exemptions have been granted in the past.

Flight Global | Related On Delta, All-Suite Business Class Flights – The New York Times




Photo of the Day

Climbing over the Italian Alps. Captured by @nickilaa (via Instagram).

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


> Tweet of the Day

Two @GWR titles and one very surprised guest. #WestJetVegasSurprise is anything but ordinary.

WestJet @WestJet


Association News

APEX TECH: Register Now to Participate in Important Industry Votes

What is APEX 0415? It is the first IFE content delivery specification developed under the DECE Common Format (CF) and designed to access the standardized media technologies, profiles and workflows that govern motion picture and television content delivery in the broader content delivery ecosystem. APEX 0415, the “Media and Device IFE Ecosystem Specification,” will be explained, discussed, and put to a vote during APEX TECH. Register now to ensure that you are a part of it.


Deadline to Submit APEX EXPO Session Proposals Is May 19

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 EXPO. 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 by May 19.


> Quote of the Day

"I don't spend my time pontificating about high-concept things; I spend my time solving engineering and manufacturing problems."

Elon Musk


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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