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July 10, 2019



Today's Top Stories



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


Emirates to Offer Uninterrupted Wi-Fi on Flights to and From US

Emirates will soon offer uninterrupted Wi-Fi, mobile service and live TV broadcasts on flights between the US and Dubai. The airline will make use of new satellite coverage over the North Pole, announced by Inmarsat last week, that will go live in 2022. “Over the years, we have worked closely with Inmarsat and our supply partners to continually raise the bar on in-flight connectivity, and we look forward to further enhancing that experience, taking advantage of new technologies and infrastructure,” said Adel Al Redha, Emirates’ executive vice-president and chief operations officer.  

Gulf News | Related World’s first and only global mobile broadband service enhanced with new Arctic capabilities – Inmarsat



Virgin Galactic to Go Public After Merger With Venture Capital Firm

Virgin Galactic is planning to go public as part of a deal that will see new investors take a 49% stake. The space tourism venture, founded by Richard Branson, will merge with Social Capital Hedosophia, in a deal that is expected to close before the end of this year. Galactic will become the “first and only publicly traded commercial human spaceflight company,” the companies said in a joint statement. Virgin Galactic plans to start flying passengers in the first half of 2020, with about 600 customers having so far agreed to pay between $200,000 and $250,000 per seat.

CNN | Related Virgin Galactic’s quest for space – The Washington Post



Airbus Set to Overtake Boeing as Biggest Planemaker

Boeing has experienced a slump in deliveries following the global grounding of the 737 MAX. Airbus reported 389 deliveries in the first half of 2019, a 28% increase compared to the period last year, and is on track to overtake Boeing for the first time in seven years.

The Guardian | Related American Airlines becomes the first US airline to order new Airbus plane – CNBC



Lufthansa Considers Skycouch-Style Product in Economy Class

Lufthansa is considering offering a lie-flat seating option in economy class similar to Air New Zealand’s Skycouch product. In a recent online survey, the airline asked economy-class customers what additional services they would be willing to pay for. Options included a Skycouch-style product, an amenity kit and a premium pillow and blanket.  

Aerotelegraph | Related Class Concepts: Sleeper Class – APEX Media



Southwest Sinks Its Teeth Into Another High-Flying Shark Week Collaboration

Southwest Airlines is teaming up again with Discovery Channel to celebrate Shark Week. The partnership includes a Facebook-based augmented reality experience and the return of a custom IFE channel, featuring Extinct or Alive: The Lost Shark, which passengers can view almost 30 days before it premiers during Shark Week. “Year after year, our Shark Week content is among the most-watched content on board, and we have no doubt it will be the same this year,” said Alyssa Foster, a Southwest spokesperson.

APEX Media | Related Southwest Airlines Partners With The Kindness Diaries – APEX Media



Qantas Trials Preferred Seating in Economy Class

Qantas will introduce a preferred seating option on domestic and international flights, setting aside a row of economy-class seats close to the front of the cabin. The option is aimed at passengers who are willing to pay extra to be among the first to step off the aircraft. The service will be trialed throughout the rest of 2019. Airlines such as Emirates, Air New Zealand, Lufthansa and Singapore Airlines offer a similar service.

Australian Business Traveller | Related Qantas to Launch Points Planes With Unique In-Flight Service Offering – APEX Media



Tony Fernandes: No Plans for AirAsia Flights to Europe

AirAsia Group CEO Tony Fernandes said it would be hard for the airline to justify launching routes to Europe, because of a capacity glut in the continent. “Obviously, it’s a dream of mine to go back to London – it’s kind of my second home – it’s just [that] we can’t make money right now,” Fernandes said. AirAsia X, the group’s low-cost long-haul airline, previously operated routes between Kuala Lumpur and London and Paris, but canceled the services in 2012.

Business Traveller | Related AirAsia Launches Venture Capital Fund in Partnership With 500 Startups – APEX Media





From London to Doha. Captured by @were_you_on_this_flight (via Instagram)

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> Tweet of the Day

“The success of a concert depends on various people working together as a team. The same applies to flying.” ✈️ 🎻 First Officer Jan Liebich talks about his passion for two completely different things: aviation and music.

Swiss Intl Air Lines @FlySWISS


Association News

APEX EXPO Takes a Closer Look at Next-Gen IFEC

With the aviation and content market always changing, airlines rely on analysis of big data in order to stay current. Technology helps create the best possible travel experience, starting from the ground floor. At EXPO, sessions in the Next-Gen IFEC track address the global impact technology has on the way airlines source content and connectivity solutions to present to their passengers. Join the conversation and secure your seat today.



Spafax is looking for a passionate individual with a strong interest for entertainment, technology and aviation to join our team. The Account Manager has overall responsibility for all aspects of content delivery to the airline account: leveraging a thorough understanding of the airline's commercial and strategic objectives, fleet plans, and competitive positioning. Click here for the full job description.
> Account Manager - Spafax Atlanta, GA, USA


> Quote of the Day


"Let the future tell the truth."

Nikola Tesla


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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