Air Canada, UI and CX of in-flight entertainment system

I recently traveled by Air Canada from Incheon (Seoul) to Vancouver and then to Toronto. I spent 9 hours in a new airplane (Being 788 Dreamliner) and then 4 more hours in an old one (Airbus 320). In two airplanes, I watched same movies and listened to same music to learn a commonality and several differences of the personal touch-screen TV systems.

As for the commonality, the in-flight entertainment systems embedded in two airplanes are controlled by touch. They have no wired/wireless controllers to select a program or to change the brightness or volume. Although touch is popular, a passenger behind me kept pressing his/her screen firmly and moving my headrest. Therefore, “minimizing the number of touching activities” will be critical in enhancing my own entertainment experience as well as improving the in-flight experience of the passenger sitting in front of me.




As for the differences, I found two things that make the new system better than the old one. First, the new system has a better User Interface (UI or layout) than the old one. In the new system, I was able to store individual programs (e.g., movie, tv, and music) and then bring them up to play while enjoying other programs. For instance, while I was watching a movie, I could pause it and then call and listen to the music I stored in advance. In the old system, I completely stopped playing one program to enjoy another one and, more importantly, doing so needs many, many touches. Further, the new system has a new drop-down menu at the top which helped me navigate the programs.

Second, the new system provides a better Customer Experience (CX) than the old one. The new system has a simpler, darker background and thus the information and programs are clear. Adding to that, “a small airplane marker in the bottom” at the new system showed how much more to go to the destination. In the old system, I had no idea how many hours were left and, to quench this curiosity, I should have pressed a lot of buttons. More importantly, the new system responded to my touch faster and more accurately than the old one.