A single solution with multi-DRM support to reduce operating complexities and costs.

Helping to Create a Better In-flight Entertainment Experience

If you fly a fair amount, most likely you are very familiar with personal in-flight entertainment systems. If you’re in coach on a long-haul flight, often you can use a tiny screen in the headrest in front of you to watch TV programs or movies. With a small, low-resolution screen and often-difficult viewing angle, it’s not exactly the optimum entertainment experience. I remember one time when I was treated to a system-generated error. In today’s world with many passengers carrying around high-resolution and powerful mobile devices, the question naturally comes to mind, why can’t I use my tablet or notebook to view this content?

Enabling a better in-flight entertainment experience for the passenger and the airline

Well, airlines and their in-flight entertainment equipment partners feel your pain. As businesses are now pursuing a “BYOD” (bring your own device) strategy allowing employees to use their personal mobile devices for work, the airline industry is also implementing a BYOD strategy for ita customers. ExpressPlay DRM service for in-flight entertainment systems is proud to be working with Panasonic to bring to market a solution to make this happen. Panasonic’s In-flight entertainment equipment streams video and audio content over the airplane’s Wi-Fi network to passenger’s favorite mobile devices. If the passenger doesn’t have a device, the airlines have the option to pass out or rent them. This results in not only a better experience for the passengers, but it benefits the airlines as well. Consumer mobile devices are lighter than the in-seat entertainment systems, saving fuel costs. Also, repair and upkeep costs are greatly reduced compared to the older inflight systems.

DRM content protection without broadband

The question that might come to mind is how this system works without a robust Internet connection. In-flight Wi-Fi Internet connections are often not fast enough to stream online radio, let alone hi-definition video. The system doesn’t actually use the Internet. It uses the local Wi-Fi connection, which is fast enough to stream hi-definition video from an in-plane server. So, the airline just needs to update the server with content. It also just happens that ExpressPlay’s DRM content protection technology is flexible enough to work without an Internet connection, which is something you can’t always guarantee with in-flight. To enable this, ExpressPlay is working with Panasonic and others to install a version of the ExpressPlay server, which provides DRM content protection without an Internet connection.

Other flexible transportation options

Panasonic and ExpressPlay DRM service are now rolling out these BYOD entertainment systems to major airline partners. Yet, they are useful beyond the airline industry. There are many modes of transportation where Internet connections can be problematic, such as buses, passenger trains and ships. ExpressPlay is working with our equipment partners to equip all of these with the option for passengers to enjoy high quality video entertainment on their favorite devices.