Panasonic Avionics Corporation's In-Flight Entertainment Systems Earn 'Hottest New Product Designs' Honors

Jun 28, 2010, 08:08 ET from Panasonic Avionics Corporation

LAKE FOREST, Calif., June 28 /PRNewswire/ -- Panasonic Avionics Corporation (Panasonic), the world leader in state-of-the-art in-flight entertainment and communication (IFEC) systems, was recognized for design leadership and innovation yesterday, when two of its most revolutionary IFEC solutions were selected for International Design Excellence Awards (IDEA®).

Panasonic's Integrated Smart Monitor, a seatback hardware solution, and Panasonic's neXperience (formerly called "FlightPath"), an interactive passenger experience platform, collected design awards in three categories.

The Integrated Smart Monitor, created with industrial design firm Teague, earned a bronze IDEA in the transportation category and a silver IDEA in design research.  neXperience, conceived with the assistance of design agency Artefact, was named a bronze IDEA winner in the interactive product experiences category.

"We recognize that cutting edge technology alone does not make a great product.  Great products are equally dependent on great design," said Paul Margis, Chief Executive Officer of Panasonic Avionics Corporation.  "We take design very seriously and are proud to have our efforts recognized. To have two different solutions honored with IDEAs in the same year is incredibly gratifying.  It reinforces our commitment to creating the best possible IFEC solutions for our customers."

Established in 1980, the IDEAs are sponsored by the Industrial Designers Society of America (IDSA) to recognize the most groundbreaking concepts in products, ecodesign, interaction design, packaging, strategy, research and concepts.  Entries are judged on innovation, benefit, aesthetics, usability and design strategy.

The Integrated Smart Monitor, now in production, is the airline industry's first fully integrated IFEC seat solution, in which the smart monitor and passenger seat are purpose-built for one another.  Unlike other IFEC systems, which often require customization to the seats, the monitors or both, Panasonic's Integrated Smart Monitor was designed holistically to address the seat-IFEC challenge from scratch.  Collaborating with Teague and seat vendor Weber Aircraft, Panasonic worked from the ground up to create an integrated IFEC solution that would eliminate the weight, space and power draw issues that previously led airlines to resist seatback IFEC solutions for economy class.  The result was a next-generation, touch-screen monitor seamlessly integrated with an ultra-thin, lightweight economy seat that transforms the passenger experience.

"We set the standard in collaboration and design," said Marshal H. Perlman, Director, Product Management at Panasonic Avionics Corporation.  "Other IFEC suppliers are now following suit because we've demonstrated that everyone wins when we design a solution with the passenger – and airlines – in mind."

Panasonic neXperience, a concept interactive business platform, works with the aircraft's IFEC system to offer an event-driven, location-aware and content-rich seatback environment.  Content, including in-flight promotional offers and newsfeeds, can be customized to each passenger's preferences, and is presented within a visual in-flight timeline to the destination.  

For airlines, neXperience can offer new revenue opportunities, particularly when coupled with real-time broadband connectivity.  For example, passengers can receive targeted advertising and shopping opportunities, based on location, destination, activity or preferences.

"neXperience keeps passengers engaged, improves the workflow for the cabin crew and offers enhanced revenue or branding opportunities for airlines," said Steve Gladstone, Director, Product Management at Panasonic Avionics Corporation.  "It is the ultimate in-flight application."

IDEA was formerly known as the Industrial Design Excellence Awards.  The name changed in 2007 to emphasize the international reach and influence of the competition.  IDEA is co-sponsored by Fast Company and IDSA.

About Panasonic Avionics Corporation

Panasonic Avionics Corporation is the world's leading supplier of in-flight entertainment and communication systems.  The company's best-in-class solutions, supported by professional maintenance services, fully integrate with the cabin enabling airlines to deliver the ultimate travel experiences with a rich variety of entertainment choices, resulting in improved quality communication systems and solutions, and lower overall costs.

Established in 1979, Panasonic Avionics Corporation, a U.S. corporation, is a subsidiary of Panasonic Corporation of North America, the principal North American subsidiary of Panasonic Corporation (NYSE: PC).  Headquartered in Lake Forest, California with over 2,600 employees and operations in 50 locations worldwide, it serves over 200 customers worldwide and provides IFEC systems on over 3,700 aircraft.  For additional information, please visit

SOURCE Panasonic Avionics Corporation