Panasonic Avionics‘ Arc 3D inflight moving map is getting a live data update. The company announced the release of Arc v2 at APEX EXPO in Long Beach last week, adding multiple features which deliver immediate value and also demonstrate the ability of the platform to scale and grow.
Arc 2.0 takes inflight maps to the next level. It leverages our proven design thinking, the latest 4K technology, and in-flight connectivity to deliver a breadth of real time information and insights in flight.– Dominic Green, Senior Director of Digital Product Management at Panasonic Avionics
Among the new features added in this release, an updated Arc Studio management interface allows for easier management of place names, landmarks, or points of interest. Arc also now supports the display of regularly updated weather data, both globally and specific to the flight’s destination.
For airlines looking to boost ancillary revenue, an update to the Arc City Guides allows integration of new design elements and other customization for points of interest. This could enable custom content to boost engagement or drive booking traffic to a particular destination.
The weather data feature is enabled through integration between the Arc service running on the IFE head-end and the inflight connectivity link available on the aircraft. Panasonic suggests this is just the “first of many live, data-enabled features and map content layers that will become available in future releases.”
Andrew Mohr, PAC’s Vice President for Digital Solutions, oversees the Arc product line and believes the additional data link could enable a broad range of digital services, many with low bandwidth requirements. The map engine becomes a service to the rest of the modules within the IFE platform, he explained, “and we can then expose shopping elements and other promotional items within the map. Clicking on those could take you to an actual transaction, with payments processed in real time.”
Mohr is quick to point out that this sort of service will still rely on a limited, pre-staged catalog of products on offer to limit the total bandwidth consumed. But real time transaction processing enables an expanded range of options, all of which help convert the system into a truly connected sales and marketing platform. This is the ultimate goal for the Arc product roadmap.
This also requires a ubiquitous, dependable connectivity service (or an offline fallback). That may prove the larger challenge, depending on the airline customer, flight routes, and connectivity technologies in use.
Panasonic also outlined the product roadmap for Arc. This includes a version of the new map solution to display on the controller handset in premium cabin seats. This could also potentially extend to embedding the advanced map content into a companion app or making it available via a web interface for engagement on a personal tablet or smartphone. Mohr even suggests an option for a smart watch integration, allowing access to details like trip time remaining at a glance, without interrupting the primary engagement with the entertainment content on the main screen.
A future generation could also include a flight simulator feature which will allow passengers to “take simulated control of their flight, navigate the world, and play flight-related games.”
First unveiled in 2019, Arc is Panasonic Avionics’ 3D integrated moving map application designed to enrich the passenger travel experience and has been ordered by 25 airlines.
More news from APEX EXPO 2022
- Panasonic Avionics, OneWeb team for inflight internet service
- Anuvu boosts Ka-band connectivity with dual panel antenna
- Virgin Australia picks 2Ku for Wi-Fi boost
- Panasonic Avionics highlights Stellar Blu antenna for OneWeb LEO service
- Dimmable windows coming to the A350 with Starlux
- A first look at Spirit’s new seats
- Bringing the moving map online: Panasonic’s Arc gets a data feed
- Pairing, casting and streaming: The next generation of inflight entertainment emerges
- Starlink/JSX STC slips
- SLAs suck: Seeking a service specification shift
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