Boeing responds to market demands with new wireless IFE and digital services platform


Boeing Digital Direct is uniquely positioned to help airlines reduce high-touch materials and minimise flight attendant and passenger interaction.

By David McGowan, Flight Operations & Passenger Market Director, Boeing

As inflight entertainment continues to evolve in the digital age, passengers are seeking options that will keep them entertained and provide relief from the stresses of travel, especially considering today’s global realities. To expand its digital reach, Boeing has teamed with industry leading technology company IMMFLY to introduce Boeing Digital Direct – a wireless inflight entertainment (wIFE) and digital services platform for airlines. Considering ease of implementation, evolution of wireless services and the enhanced use of passenger devices for content consumption, today’s inflight entertainment operations are changing in front of our eyes. For the better.

In the current COVID-19 environment, Boeing Digital Direct is uniquely positioned to help airlines reduce high-touch materials and minimise flight attendant and passenger interaction, ultimately delivering a highly customisable passenger experience.

Implementation is straightforward for airlines – starting with portal design, e-commerce optimisation and simple integration with existing third parties. The service is deployed through an existing wireless network or through an all-in-one server that fits in an overhead bin, to enable streaming of content to passengers’ Wi-Fi enabled devices.

It’s no secret, airline operations have been significantly affected by COVID-19 driven realities, with some operations experiencing a 90% reduction. Yet recent studies show continued interest in wIFE, with installations experiencing a much smaller reduction during the same timeframe. This illustrates how important a digital platform is for driving airline COVID-19 recovery and ancillary revenue efforts while entertaining and communicating with passengers, all at the tap of a finger. Boeing Digital Direct provides an easy user interface so passengers can enjoy movies, TV, music, games, kids content, moving maps and airline branded channels while also engaging with onboard digital retail offers. All content is loaded remotely and optimised on the backend with deep analytics to provide valuable insights.

Additionally, Boeing Digital Direct is unique in its ability to drive robust ancillary revenue generation through e-commerce modules with onboard retail, content commercialisation, advertising and enhanced operational efficiencies. Boeing Digital Direct became a reality after Boeing HorizonX, the capital and business venture arm of the company, invested in IMMFLY, a technology company that designs, develops and manages inflight digital services, to bring together global market leading capabilities focused on inflight entertainment and ancillary revenue generation.

As we continue to manage and emerge from today’s challenges, Boeing Digital Direct will help airlines offer a unique and personalised passenger experience, introduce true onboard revenue generating models and efficiently manage their onboard experience needs.

Boeing will be showcasing the new wIFE and digital services platform at its virtual stand during the upcoming FTE APEX Virtual Expo, co-located with IFSA Onboard Hospitality Virtual Expo, on 8-9 December. For a full list of exhibitors and to register for the event, visit our website here. >> 

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