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January 26, 2021



Today's Top Stories


Global Airlines Take Stance on Workforce Inoculations

Southwest Airlines announced plans to cover the cost of admin fees associated with COVID-19 vaccinations for all of its employees, and will strongly encourage its workforce to get vaccinated. Meanwhile, Singapore Airlines set a goal to become the world’s first airline to achieve a 100% employee inoculation rate. Around 7,000 staff members have signed up for the voluntary program. Last week, United Airlines’ CEO Scott Kirby mentioned that he would be inclined to make vaccines mandatory for employees if other companies began implementing such a policy. American Airlines is planning a vaccine rollout at airports across the country, but encouraged pilots to get vaccinated sooner, on their own time.

Travel Pulse | Related Singapore Air Sets Sights on Fully-Vaccinated Workforce – Business Traveler



Factorydesign Showcases Narrowbody Business-Class Seats

In a bid to create a side-by-side business-class seat that still allows passengers to access the aisle easily in a narrowbody jet, Factorydesign developed a concept called Access. While the seats do not lie flat, they do feature a 47” pitch and their compact size allows for additional seating density. Factorydesign is betting that the single-aisle aircraft market will grow significantly and is looking to fill a mid-market niche. “Currently there is a significant gap between the lie-flat, direct aisle seats such as Solo and the conventional 2-2 configuration,” the company said.

The design air | Related Factorydesign’s HeadZone concept hits the market – aircraft interiors international



WE by West Platform to Offer Content Recommendations

Following the announcement of a partnership with cultural AI company Qloo last November, West Entertainment has revealed that its workflow platform, WE by West, can predict consumer tastes. For each title selected by its airline clients, WE by West will provide recommendations for additional movies, TV shows and music based on the 750 billion+ cultural correlations already mapped by Qloo’s AI engine. Together with West’s data and analytics solution, this new capability aims to help airlines strengthen their customer satisfaction levels.

West Entertainment | Related West Entertainment Partners With Qloo for Jetset AI In-Flight Entertainment – APEX Media



United’s Digital Hub Gets Customers Travel-Ready

Travelers flying with United Airlines may notice a new feature integrated into its mobile app and website. The Travel-Ready Center provides each customer with a personalized checklist to help sort through increasingly complex travel requirements. Users can also find local COVID-19 testing options and store digital copies of testing and vaccination records. United will add more functionality to the Travel-Ready Center in the near future, including the ability to schedule a COVID test, video chat with a customer service agent and view country-specific visa requirements.

United Airlines | Related United Helps Customers Navigate Travel Restrictions with New Online, Interactive Map – United Airlines



Delta Names Chief Health Officer

Seeking to rethink its approach to health and wellbeing, Delta Air Lines invited Dr. Henry Ting to join the company as its first chief health officer. Ting currently works at the Mayo Clinic, which has advised the airline on best practices since the early days of the pandemic. “We know we can continue to improve and establish Delta as a model for how organizations promote physical and mental health,” said Delta’s CEO, Ed Bastian. During his tenure, Ting, who has experience in patient care, medical research, education and management, will explore ways to tap into artificial intelligence, data strategies and innovative partnerships.

Delta Air Lines | Related Delta plans to bring back 400 pilots, signaling optimism about future air travel​ – CNBC



Linstol Enters Exclusive Distribution Agreement with Aerocare

A new agreement will see Linstol become the exclusive distributor of Aerocare International’s line of amenity products, including hand sanitizer and sanitizing wipes, across the aviation industry. “We continue to search for innovative solutions within the airline space and are excited to raise the bar for our airline partners. Aerocare's 3-in 1 technology allows us to provide a unique product that cleans, sanitizes and protects the end user while being safe to use onboard aircraft,” commented Mark Russell, Linstol’s CEO.

LinkedIn | Related What We’re Made Of: Mark Russell, Linstol – APEX Media



Lidar System at BWI Provides Live Physical Distancing Feedback

Travelers lining up at Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport (BWI) checkpoints can receive feedback on their physical distancing efforts in real time thanks to a new detection system. Using a combination of lidar scanning and CrowdVision analysis software, the system monitors the queue and displays instructions on an overhead screen if it finds greater separation is necessary. The hardware originally monitored wait times before being repurposed to cater to COVID-19 restrictions.

passenger terminal today | Related CrowdVision merges with iinside – CrowdVision





These machines have a soul.

This week, we're highlighting the work of Daniel Rico, which was featured in issue 9.4 of #APEXExperienceMag. 

> Tweet of the Day

Congratulazioni @Air_Dolomiti! The Italian airline, one of our first #Embraer #EJet customers, is celebrating 30 years of flying this month. #WeAreEmbraer #EmbraerStories

Embraer @embraer


Association News

Get Your Questions Answered Live at Tomorrow's APEX + Viasat Event

Join APEX and Viasat tomorrow for the first virtual event of the new year! Right now, passengers are traveling with new touchless and connected technologies as the industry enters a new era. How are airlines adapting? Don Buchman of Viasat, Andres Castañeda of Aeroméxico and Clarissa Sebastian from American Airlines will share their thoughts during a panel discussion. Rick Baldridge, CEO and president of Viasat, will also conduct a fireside chat. Both segments will be supplemented by a live Q&A and Skift's Editor at Large Brian Sumers will serve as moderator. Registration is free, so sign up now!


> Quote of the Day

“Hot food vending machines have evolved significantly with regard to product quality, value for the money and the overall customer experience.”

Steve Lambert, Ontario International Airport
Read the article


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 apex.aero 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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