Virtual reality headsets are coming to British Airways flights
One of the perks of flying is getting to watch a selection of movies from the comfort of your seat. British Airways wanted to kick that experience up a notch by transporting passengers to their own 3D cinema. How? The airline is trialling a new virtual reality headset.
For the rest of 2019, customers travelling on certain flights in First from London Heathrow to New York JFK can watch a collection of award-winning films, documentaries, and other travel programs in 2D, 3D or 360° formats via an AlloSky headset. BA also worked with experts to include a variety of therapeutic programmes, including guided meditation and sound therapy, specially designed for customers who have a fear of flying. And travellers are able to use the headsets regardless of the position they are in, even lying fully flat.
“We are always looking at the latest technology to enhance our customers’ experience on the ground and in the air,” Sajida Ismail, Head of Inflight Product at British Airways, said in a statement. “Virtual reality has the power to revolutionise in-flight entertainment, and we’re really excited to trial these new glasses as they should create a unique and memorable journey for our First customers.”
The technological development is part of the airline’s 100th anniversary, which takes place on 25 August. To celebrate its centenary year, in addition to releasing the headsets, British Airways launched an exhibition at Saatchi Gallery called BA 2119: Flight of the Future. Working with the Royal College of Art and using global research, the airline created a display to showcase what aviation could look like in the future.
There’s also a virtual reality experience called Fly that traces “humankind’s relationship to flying from the earliest imaginings of Leonardo da Vinci and his ornithopter to the Wright Brothers’ success on Kitty Hawk and the first passenger flight to Paris.” Users can also have a VR experience inside a Concorde and the new A350.
While the VR experiences are reserved for those travelling in first class, the airline is investing money in technology that will help everyone on board. They plan to install the best quality Wi-Fi and power at every seat.
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