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February 9, 2018



Today's Top Stories



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


Embrace or Perish: Emirates President Warns Industry of Technology’s “Looming Storm”

Emirates president Tim Clark has urged the airline industry to embrace emerging technologies. "There's a storm coming and if you don't get on it and deal with it you will perish," Clark told Business Insider. “It's not a question about using advanced technology to increase the way you do your business like ancillary revenue streams because that's a given.” He described the industry as “fairly Jurassic” and “process driven.” Instead of treating technology as a peripheral side project, he appealed for airlines to adopt advanced tech, such as blockchain, as a central element of their businesses.

Business Insider | Related Sir Tim Clark’s Forecast: Biometrics and Windowless Airplanes – APEX Media



Star Alliance Harmonizes Travel Experience With Launch of Digital Services Platform

Star Alliance has launched a new digital service platform for member airlines to share data when passengers are flying with multiple carriers. The alliance said its longer-term goal for the platform is to enable customers to use any member airline’s website or mobile app to access all the information they need for travel on several Star Alliance carriers, such as seat selection for an entire trip at the time of booking and baggage tracking. “Most frequent travelers have a ‘home airline’ in our network and would prefer to control their entire travel experience through a single app or website,” said Star Alliance CEO Jeffrey Goh.

Business Traveller | Related Are Low-Cost Carriers in Star Alliance's Future? – Travel Pulse



Finnair Switches to Digital Newspapers on Long-Haul Flights

Finnair will no longer offer print media to passengers on its long-haul Airbus A330 and A350 services. More than 50 international newspapers are available to read via its wireless Nordic Sky portal in PDF format. Passengers can access the portal through their personal devices and don’t need to purchase Wi-Fi to read the newspapers. Finnair said print publications will still be offered on short-haul flights until its narrow-body fleet is equipped with Wi-Fi later this year.

Business Traveller | Related Finnair Now Accepts Apple Pay For Ticket and Ancillary Purchases – APEX Media



Patented Leather: Could Lab-Grown Textiles Become an Aircraft Interiors Trend?

ETF Partners, an equity fund manager focused on sustainability, yesterday announced a £70-million investment in E-Leather. The company produces an eco-friendly leather-fiber composite that is used by more than 150 airlines for their seat covers. Meanwhile, scientists at Modern Meadow are brewing the latest revolution in textiles: lab-grown, non-mammalian leather. FAA requirements will dictate how lab-grown textiles permeate the airline industry.

APEX Media | Related Leather’s Double Duty: In-Flight Luxury (And Utility) – APEX Media



Aircraft Manufacturers Study Single-Pilot Cockpits

Aerospace manufacturers are exploring how to make single pilot jet aircraft into a reality within commercial aviation. ST Aerospace demonstrated to delegates at the Singapore Airshow how a cockpit could be modified for one pilot when the firm converts passenger jets to freighters. But the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 and a deliberate crash by a Germanwings pilot in the last few years mean convincing the public to fly on a single-pilot jet would take “a couple of decades,” said Charles Toups, Boeing’s vice-president of Research and Technology.

The Guardian | Related Your plane could fly itself by 2025…if you’re cool with that – Quartz



A Texas-Based Thai Funk Band Will Curate Your In-Flight Playlist

A Texas-based “Thai funk” band called Khruangbin – which means airplane in Thai – has launched an online platform, allowing users to “book” a curated playlist for an upcoming flight. uses information provided by users, such as which airport they are flying from and to, whether they are flying nonstop and their preference of window or aisle seats, to create a personalized playlist powered by Spotify with enough songs for the exact length of the flight. The playlists feature songs that inspired Khruangbin while writing their new album.

Condé Nast Traveler | Related On the Fringe: Fresh Twists on Traditional In-Flight Entertainment – APEX Media



Sichuan Airlines Orders 10 Airbus A350s

Sichuan Airlines has ordered 10 Airbus A350-900s, worth a combined $3 billion at list prices. The Chengdu-based carrier didn’t give details on when the wide-bodies will be delivered, but said the aircraft will facilitate its ongoing international expansion plans. Sichuan operates a fleet of 132 aircraft on more than 270 routes. The airline recently added new routes to Auckland, Dubai, Los Angeles, Melbourne, Moscow, Prague, Sydney and Vancouver, and will launch routes to Boston, Cairo, Copenhagen and Tel Aviv later this year.

Air Transport World | Related China's Sichuan Airlines adds maiden A320neo – CH Aviation





KLM Boeing 787-9 leaving Amsterdam's Schiphol Airport. Captured by @jc_aviationproductions (via Instagram).

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


> Tweet of the Day

On Friday, @united will be giving out super hero action figures of #Olympic athletes at the airline's hub airports. 100 at each airport.

Harriet Baskas @hbaskas


Association News

Japan Airlines Vice-President of Products & Services Confirmed for APEX Asia

Akira Mitsumasu, Japan Airlines' vice-president of Products & Services, is confirmed to speak at APEX Asia about Japan Airlines' strategy for passenger engagement and loyalty via various marketing techniques, commitment to technology and superior products and services. This is a session you won’t want to miss – register now!


> Quote of the Day


"Quality is never an accident. It is always the result of intelligent effort."

John Ruskin


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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