The economic environment has not been kind to Europe over the last couple of years, and in 2011 Lufthansa Systems took steps to realign the company not only for significant cost reductions but for an equal amount of revenue growth as well.
It reorganized into profit centers that are defined by the customer base.
The commercial division has focused on tools that help airlines boost their own revenues, Stefan Auerbach, senior vices president of airline solutions, said.
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Static inflight entertainment systems are so last century. The new systems will assume that passengers will bring their own screens on board — tablets, laptops or hand-held devices.
Lufthansa Systems’ BoardConnect is a wireless system that allows passengers to log onto an airline’s “infotainment” portal and make use of libraries of movies, TV shows, music and reading material.
Unlike heavy, bulky IFE systems of the past, BoardConnect operates on minimal equipment: A 767 would need one small server and five even smaller access points.
The system will integrate all the information that an airline might want to provide, such as menus and duty-free items.
“Rather than annoy the entire plane, you can send a message saying, ‘I’m in 22C and I’d like to buy this item,’” Dr. Jörg Liebe, chief information officer, said.
And if you didn’t manage to finish the magazine or newspaper while in flight, you can take it with you, he said. The airline can let you keep it on loan for a period of five days or so.