More than in-flight entertainment: The digital BoardConnect platform from Lufthansa Systems

More than in-flight entertainment: The digital BoardConnect platform from Lufthansa Systems
Mar 28, 2017
Press release
Crew member with tablet using mCabin

AIX 2017: Lufthansa Systems presents BoardConnect 5.0 as the perfect platform for digitalization in the aircraft / mCabin enhanced with new features and apps

At this year’s Aircraft Interiors Expo (AIX) in Hamburg, Lufthansa Systems is presenting the new generation of its multi-award-winning BoardConnect wireless in-flight entertainment (IFE) platform, with new features and a new user interface. Visitors can also find out about the mCabin product family, which offers new functions and additional apps to drive the digitalization of crew processes. Visit Lufthansa Systems from April 4–6 at AIX at stand #2E24.

New release: BoardConnect 5.0

BoardConnect enables passengers to stream content from an airline’s entertainment offering to their own tablets or smartphones during a flight. The BoardConnect product suite is available in three hardware versions. In addition to the permanently installed classic BoardConnect IFE solution, there is also the flexible BoardConnect Portable version. It combines all of the technical components in a single device which can be installed quickly and easily on any aircraft. BoardConnect Portable received the Crystal Cabin Award at AIX 2016. The third option available is the BoardConnect Plus connectivity solution. Lufthansa Systems is responding to the growing demand for new on-board digital services by further developing its software – with the new BoardConnect 5.0, which runs on all three versions of the system. BoardConnect 5.0 features a fresh design with a new user interface and an open platform architecture.

“Our digital BoardConnect platform is far more than just a pure IFE solution. Airlines can use it to significantly improve their passengers’ digital experience and further personalize their services. It is also part of our company strategy to share our expertise so that our customers can achieve their digital transformation goals,” said Norbert Müller, Senior Vice President BoardConnect at Lufthansa Systems.

The core of the digital BoardConnect platform is its open architecture. New technologies have turned BoardConnect into a kind of cloud provider above the clouds. It enables airlines to run their own applications in the aircraft on the basis of BoardConnect. This also applies to applications from an airline’s external partners, and it supports use cases for crews and passengers.

The solution makes it easier for passengers to use on-board services as well. They simply have to connect to the on-board WiFi to access all of the connected services via a standardized user interface. The layout can naturally be adapted to the individual corporate design of each airline. BoardConnect 5.0 gives airlines numerous options for integrating new offers and generating additional revenues. The platform is designed for fast and easy technical integration.

Connectivity is the future of IFE, because on-board Internet is the prerequisite for real-time communication, streaming live events and additional services from external partners. Connectivity thus remains a focal point at Lufthansa Systems – for airlines both inside and outside of the Lufthansa Group. Among other things, the aviation IT specialist is currently working with its partners Inmarsat and Lufthansa Technik to install broadband Internet on the short- and medium-haul fleets of Lufthansa, Eurowings and Austrian Airlines.

New products from the mCabin suite

Lufthansa Systems is also presenting new products from its mCabin suite at AIX. Passengers and crew members now expect digitalized services on board like those they use on the ground – but many airlines haven’t reached this stage yet. Mobile solutions for the cabin crew optimally support airlines of all sizes and business models in the digitalization of their on-board processes.

“mCabin offers airlines complete flexibility. We’ve expanded its modularity and role-based functionality so that each airline can choose the exact modules it needs,” explained Julie Ingleson, Product Manager Mobile Solutions/mCabin. “The app is also easily scalable and thus well suited to growing teams.”

Prior to departure and during the flight, the mCabin crew app provides the cabin team with all of the passenger service information they need, including a passenger manifest complete with information about the passengers’ seats, status, food preferences and special requirements. mCabin ensures outstanding passenger communication, smooth crew management and optimized processes in every phase of crew service. And to bring mobility to IFE, the BoardConnect crew front-end has been integrated into mCabin. The mCabin suite also includes additional apps: the new mCabin/Library+, mCabin/Messenger and mCabin/CityGuide.

mCabin/Library+ brings together all crew documents in a digital form. This includes crew manuals and airline-specific information. An easy-to-use document management system also keeps the documents up to date and facilitates the search for specific information. The mCabin/Messenger service connects an airline’s cabin crew and ground staff based on their respective functions. This enables colleagues to communicate even if they don´t know each other by name. mCabin/CityGuide is an exclusive travel guide platform for crews with local information on all of an airline’s destinations, including organizational details about layovers such as contact details, crew hotels and pick-up times, as well as personal tips from the crew relating to excursions and restaurants, for example.

 

Jan-Peter Gänse, Director Project & Certification at Lufthansa Systems, talks about „The future of IFE – embedded, wireless, BYOD or immersive?“ at AIX (Tuesday, April 4, 2:30 to 3:30 pm). Free online registration is required at https://www.flightglobal.com/events/aircraft-interiors-expo/forecast-sessions-2017/.
 

Caption (Copyright: Lufthansa Systems): Lufthansa Systems presents the new BoardConnect generation and new additions to its mCabin suite at AIX 2017.

 

About Lufthansa Systems
Lufthansa Systems GmbH & Co. KG is a leading airline IT provider. Based on long-term project experience, a deep understanding of complex business processes and strong technological know-how, the company provides consulting and IT services for the global aviation industry. Over 300 airlines worldwide rely on the know-how of IT specialists at Lufthansa Systems. Its portfolio covers innovative IT products and services which provide added value for its customers in terms of enhanced efficiency, reduced costs or increased profits. Headquartered in Raunheim near Frankfurt/Main, Germany, Lufthansa Systems has offices in 16 other countries.

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