Sitting Down With: David Miller, CTO
Next up in the ‘Sitting Down With’ series is Inflight Dublin’s CTO, David Miller. He discusses the standout features of Everhub, Wireless trends such as advertising and integrations, and where he sees growth in the industry. Enjoy!
What steps does Inflight Dublin take to ensure they are up to date with the latest technology trends in the industry?
We closely monitor trends and developments in the industry, and conduct research to identify areas where we could innovate and develop our existing offering. A key source is client feedback and requests made for additional features. So, for example, we have seen a demand for hybrid systems where airlines want to mix both portable and aircraft-powered servers across their fleet. We have also seen a growth in the combination of wireless IFE with onboard connectivity. However, our deployment with Qatar Airways for the Everhub Preloaded iPad solution shows us there is still demand for native application support.
What are the standout hardware and software features of the Everhub solution that make it so versatile?
When we developed our own Everhub server we were able to learn from our experiences with other systems – what worked well and what didn’t. This allowed us to deliver a low-maintenance experience to our airline clients when it comes to implementation and operational management. For example, features like the swappable batteries without any downtime in-flight, and the touch screen interface makes life that bit easier and more efficient.
On the software side, we have focussed on rolling out a single product architecture and feature set which can be reused across all clients and on all supported platforms (including portable and fixed wireless systems). So, as we add new capabilities, we can make these available to everyone. Over the last two years, we have been building out Everhub as a platform for partner integrations, including Games, Advertising, Destination Services, and Payments. All these integrations have been modularized, allowing clients to “pick and mix” as required.
Think of Everhub as a shop, and we can have a variety of content and services available in the shop window.
How do you see the demand for Wireless IFE developing in the coming years? Do you think more airlines will adopt it alongside seatback?
Absolutely, based on the enquiries we are getting now we can see a trend growing for wireless IFE adoption. This has been driven by several factors including the increased rollout of narrow-bodied aircraft for long-haul routes, as well as the desire to offer more ancillary services to airlines using the wireless IFE product as a platform. In addition, COVID-19 has driven the growth in demand from a cost reduction, flexibility and hygiene perspective.
As mentioned above, we can see growing interest in the “extended platform” – where we not only provide IFE, but a means to deliver a range of services from ourselves and our partners.
What are some key areas that Inflight Dublin differentiates from its competitors in the wireless space?
Where Inflight Dublin stands out is the ability to deliver a one-stop-shop to clients. We offer exciting content, our own fully-certified hardware, and flexible software for multiple platforms and partner integrations, all delivered with our own implementation and design services from a highly skilled and experienced in-house team.
Our Everhub trial system has been very successful in growing demand and demonstrating the proven value the system brings to airlines’ inflight service. We can have a new client up and running in a matter of weeks.
Key to our offering is holding to a vision for an integrated baseline product that can be grown as required. Not only for the wireless streaming capability but also for the back-office analytics which all clients have access to as part of the offering. In addition, given our CSP heritage, there are several new initiatives we can drive to support the end-to-end life cycle for our clients.
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