Revenues are expected to increase an average of 4. 7 per cent over each of the next five years, to
Part of the industry's growth can be attributed to a growth in flight frequencies across international routes, which has created "substantial growth in demand from airlines in
Such fast-growing countries as well as other emerging economies have spurred cross-border trade, which in turn has meant that growing airlines from these regions require new fleets of aircraft for added services over passenger and freight routes.
But carriers are also spending additional money while bringing other technological offerings into their aircraft to attract device-dependent but discerning passengers.
"The industry has been very intense, so each airline is trying to gain an advantage by offering many services, such as on-board Wi-Fi, touchscreen computers and television in front of you – and that's just another selling point for the airlines," says
While that might seem like a highly specific scenario, and rare for a passenger to access,
Part of the company's website allows passengers to check-in, while another lets them plug in their departure and arrival details to determine exactly what movies they will be able to watch on back-seat screens.
Yet airline analysts say these are still the early days of consumer electronics and innovative technologies being more closely integrated within aircraft.
As component costs have fallen, along with gadgets such as smartphones, tablets and other touchscreen entertainment systems, these elements have been wrapped into in a wider fleet of planes from aircraft makers.
"Technology is definitely getting cheaper and a lot more profitable [for airlines] than it used to be back in the day," says
Some carriers have rolled out air-to-ground in-flight Wi-Fi and even though connectivity woes continue to frustrate many consumers, there is now also satellite-based internet service as well in some planes.
In the future, some industry experts anticipate airlines buying fleets of planes that include some of today's newest features found on consumer electronic devices.
That might mean the ability to switch in-flight movies by using the wave of a hand or another gesture control, or perhaps even eye-based movements.
"Those [technologies] are not widespread, if rolled out at all, but will be coming," says
"The travel experience today, compared to just 10 years ago, has been upgraded substantially with respect to your ability to connect to the internet and not only see movies on the plane but also in high definition, on larger screens and with greater variety," adds
"It's pretty incredible what's going on in that tube at 30,000 feet."
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