LONG BEACH, CA – Bluebox Aviation Systems is at APEX EXPO 2017 demonstrating the latest developments to its IFE product portfolio.

“At Bluebox, the rates at which our portable and wireless IFE platforms are evolving are at pace with how the aviation industry itself is developing – that is, very rapidly,” said James Macrae, CTO, Bluebox Aviation Systems. “In line with this evolution, we’ve been working on a wide range of projects, from the integration of partner platforms for ancillary revenue generation to introducing the latest technologies, and using them to create the best user interfaces for increased numbers of passenger groups with various needs.”

“IFE is no longer all about entertainment, but increasingly about being part of an overall journey – booking path, pre-flight, in-flight and beyond. For us, it’s about engaging passengers during the on-board phase of that journey, and doing so with an eye to how an airline can minimise costs and effectively monetise their IFE investments,” said Kevin Clark, CEO, Bluebox Aviation Systems. “Our product roadmap is equally innovative and responsive to the changes we’re seeing in our industry – which is important as we anticipate even more technology disruption ahead, in the airline sector, and in passengers’ demands in the air.”

Highlights for this year’s APEX EXPO include:

Expanded Platform Integration – Bluebox has expanded the revenue generation potential if its IFE platforms by working with other complementary system providers to integrate their technology into the Bluebox product suite. Examples include:

  • On-board shopping
  • Payment processing
  • Advertising and ancillary revenue programs

Hollywood Approval for Bluebox Wow – Bluebox’s portable wireless streaming system – Bluebox Wow – has now been approved by five major Hollywood studios for streaming late window content. Macrae commented: “More and more passengers wish to use their own devices on board, and given the sensitivities about streaming content to passengers’ personal devices, approval from Hollywood is an important milestone for Bluebox Wow. Airlines aim to offer the widest most exciting content set available, but without approval, that content set will be limited. We’re happy that with the range of major studios approving our streaming solutions, that Bluebox Wow will offer airlines a much wider choice in the video content they can offer their passengers.”

SATCOM + EWC? Yes, with Bluebox Hybrid –  Bluebox Hybrid has been tested and proven to provide the security studios demand for EWC and offer connectivity as well, whether via a local/in-aircraft Wi-Fi network or to the wider internet if an aircraft has SATCOM system installed. [See: Gone surfing! Bluebox Portable IFE Connects to the Internet with TCS World Travel]

Accessibility – Working closely with a major international airline and a visually-impaired user group, Bluebox has enhanced its Bluebox Ai-based Accessibility platform. Leveraging the advanced accessibility features of Apple’s iOS platform, and working closely with the group to customise the platform for IFE, the new feature set includes capabilities such as:

  • Closed captioning and audio descriptions
  • For users with partial vision; bold text & increased font size, larger on-screen buttons, and a consistent layout through make controls and catalogues easier to detect and navigate
  • Inverted colours/reduced contrast make the UI easier on the eyes for users with a sensitivity to brightness

Bluebox Goes Swift-ly – Bluebox’s software development for iPad-based IFE now uses Swift, Apple’s new programming language for creating apps for iOS, on which Bluebox bases its iPad-based IFE platforms. This enables Bluebox developers to rapidly enhance the software thereby creating even richer app experiences.

Improved Battery Performance – Bluebox’s latest device and battery tests provided results longer than previously expected on new Apple iOS/devices

  • 20% increase in operational life of Bluebox Ai to 12 hours of pre-loaded video viewing
  • iPad mini 4 streamed 15 hours of continuous content from streaming server on a single charge.

iPad, iPad mini, an Swift are trademarks of Apple Inc.