The future of aircraft at seat entertainment?

As I sit here writing this, I am thinking about a long haul flight I have to look forward to at the weekend and what movies may be available to me. As with most major airlines these days they include the latest cinema hits and a number of classics.

But I probably won’t watch them.

“Why?” I hear you ask.

Some of the films they are showing I really want to watch, but not on an 8″ low-resolution screen covered in scratches and previous passengers bodily fluids.

I could pay to download the movies on to my iPad and at least benefit from a clearer screen with better resolution, but there are still two issues, the screen is still small for watching the latest blockbuster on and I have to pay for something they are possibly already showing on the plane.

So what could airlines do? Many are rolling out newer higher resolution at seat entertainment systems with bigger screens that can be integrated with your own mobile media device, but just think of the possibilities if they equipped at least some of the seats, for example business class, with Sony’s latest 3D visor.






The HMZ-T1 uses two 0.7 inch 1280×720 HD 3D OLED panels to create the perception of a 65 foot screen and is combined with a virtual 5.1 sound system. Imagine being able to see that latest cinema blockbuster in full 3D or playing the latest 3D console game against fellow passengers, on a screen the same size as your local IMAX, all whilst at the same time jetting to another part of the world!

There are of course a couple of practical issues.

  1. How do you find the G&T and small packet of nuts the stewardess has kindly left for you, without knocking it over yourself or someone else.
  2. How to you avoid looking like a complete plonker when wearing it. Maybe, like in the cinema, there would have to be a mandatory dimming of the lights.

Even so, if there were an airline out there willing to roll them out, I for one would gladly give it a try.

3D Projector? Is now the right time?

At the moment I am thinking about buying a 3D projector. I have waited for 12 months not wanting to make the same mistake I did with HD-DVD; yes I was one of the hundred people who really thought I was backing the winner in the HD-DVD vs. Blu-Ray battle. With a fresh batch of tech loaded beamers coming out this month now could be the time, I have my eye on the latest Sony, the VPL-VW95ES.  But I really wonder if this is the future for large scale 3D in the movie room. At the moment there is no alternative if you want to go big. 3D on a large plasma or LCD does not really cut it for me when trying to recreate the 3D cinema experience. That said Toshiba are about to launch a new, no glasses required, set, the Toshiba ZL2,  at a staggering 55″ which possibly makes sense for casual 3D viewing. We will have to wait and see how good it is.

So back to my dilemma. Is anything radically going to change from a projector point of view in the next two to three years, the minimum time I would want to recoup my investment. Probably not!  Anyone want to buy my existing JVC DLA-HD1 projector?