World Cup fever is in the air, as airlines compete to show the football matches during flights. Deals with content providers mean that for some passengers, there is no penalty for flying during big matches.
UAE carrier Etihad Airways is showing enjoy every FIFA World Cup football match ‘live’ on all its long-haul aircraft. All 64 games will be transmitted live at 30,000ft by IMG Media using Etihad Airways’ E-box interactive inflight entertainment system, powered by Panasonic technology. The E-box seatback screens are installed in every class of cabin – first, business and economy – so for flying football fans, no-one need miss a goal being scored.
Airlines using OnAir inflight connectivity can also please football fans, with select carriers offering access to live ticker updates. Emirates, ANA and Philippines Airlines will be giving passengers free access to the World Cup zone during the peak travelling months of June and July. The service, accessed through the inflight wi-fi portal, provides text updates of every match direct to passenger’s personal electronic devices (PEDs).
François Rodriguez, director of strategy and marketing at OnAir stated, “These airlines can now share the excitement of this fabulous sporting event with their passengers, as they fly. The service has been designed to suit the trend of passengers using two screens; digital natives can check the scores whenever they like on one screen while taking part in the other activities provided onboard on another.”
OnAir has designed the World Cup zone so that it works equally well on all PEDs, including laptops, tablets and smartphones. The feed will show all essential match data including team names, status of the match, details of each goal, bookings, and substitutions.