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ONBOARD REVIEW


 TECH TALK STEVE HARTRIDGE


SCREEN: The seat was equipped with a 39 cm (15.4”) touch-screen. The picture quality was clear with good volume and the screen was extremely responsive.


HEADSET: Oversized synthetic pads completely covered the ears. The foam pads come individually wrapped – and I struggled figuring out how to fit them on! Their noise- reducing capacity was impressive (although they couldn’t cancel out the turbulence). There’s also an audio jack for passengers' own headset.


AIRLINE: AIR CANADA FLIGHT: AC 865 – HEATHROW-MONTREAL (EX-15.35) AIRCRAFT: BOEING 777-300R CLASS: EXECUTIVE FIRST SEAT: 3D; RIGHT CENTRE SEAT IN A 1X2X1 CONFIGURATION. IFE SCREEN SPRUNG OUT FROM A LEFT FORWARD POSITION. BACKGROUND: AIR CANADA’S ‘EN ROUTE’ IFE IS SUPPLIED BY PANASONIC.


CONTENT: Passengers have on-demand access to over 600 hours of entertainment. In May 2013 Air Canada doubled its movie programming from 72 to 150 movies on international flights. Titles range from 25 current releases to classics to international cinema. Films showing before their UK release included ‘42’, the story of Jackie Robinson, the first black American professional baseball player. Among the ‘classic’ line up were


Annie Hall, Cool Hand Luke and Jaws. TV channels included multiple episodes of series like Arrow, Bones and House of Cards, while radio stations included the usual rock, classic, jazz and dance. I never got to see what games were available, as the section was ‘currently unavailable’.


Kids are offered their own set of options, both for movies and TV channels.


SPECIAL FEATURES: Passengers can watch and listen from gate to gate. Newly introduced this year are TV series box sets in comedy and drama categories that allow passengers to catch up on an entire series.


ALSO WORTH A MENTION: Most programmes have both an English and French language option.


FINAL THOUGHTS: Air Canada’s extensive and varied IFE system is hugely welcome on a day flight such as this.


www.aircanada.com


 TECH TALK ANDY HOSKINS


SCREEN: A 9-inch seat-back screen that tilts to a preferred viewing angle. It was a little grubby and the touchscreen controls were slow to respond, but at least there was nobody in the seat in front of me as I repeatedly jabbed a finger at the screen.


HEADSET: Basic headphone sets were distributed to passengers soon after take off. I opted to use my own instead.


AIRLINE: ROYAL JORDANIAN FLIGHT: RJ112, LONDON HEATHROW TO AMMAN AIRCRAFT: AIRBUS A330 CLASS: ECONOMY SEAT: 31D BACKGROUND: THE SYSTEM IS BY THALES, PANASONIC & ZODIAC, AND CONTENT IS SUPPLIED BY SPAFAX AND RAHBANI.


CONTENT: There were 14 ‘Hollywood Latest’ films from which to choose, and 50 Hollywood Classics – an Oscar-nominated film from each of the last 50 years to coincide with the airline’s half-century milestone. There was also two Hollywood Kids films, 30 Arabic movies and 12 World Cinema options, plus some 80 TV programmes to pick from.


The audio options included 75 Arabic albums and a very mixed bag of 96 Western albums. As for games, there were three specifically for kids and a further 17 single player options.


ALSO WORTH A MENTION: I chose to watch David Lean epic, Lawrence of Arabia, to get me in the spirit of a Middle Eastern adventure. Unfortunately, I only started viewing after we’d taken off and drinks and dinner had been served, meaning I missed the last 15 minutes of this 3hrs 40mins film!


FINAL THOUGHTS: Not a bad selection, and I loved the line up of 50 Hollywood Classics spanning back 50 years. I was a little underwhelmed by the ‘Hollywood Latest’ selection, but that could just be down to personal taste.


www.rj.com


WWW.ONBOARDHOSPITALITY.COM 75


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