In Flight iTunes?

Discussion in 'MacRumors News Discussion (archive)' started by MacRumors, Apr 11, 2006.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    Flight Global is reporting that Airline in-flight entertainment system providers are exploring additional features to occupy its customers while flying.

    Panasonic Avionics reveals that there has been a lot of interest in providing iTunes services to their customers during a flight. This would allow passengers to browse and download iTunes songs in-flight to their iPods.

    While Apple is aware of the interest, the concept would require special modifications to the iTunes software to allow users to then sync those songs back with their home computer. International licensing issues are also an ongoing issue. Apple refused to comment about this potential option, but talks are reported ongoing.
  2. mattthemutt macrumors regular


    Jun 13, 2004
    Ontario, Canada
    That would be more interesting than the current crap they have on those little airline radios.
  3. RoadKill macrumors member

    Dec 4, 2003
    I'm surprised record stores aren't pushing for that also.

    I wish I had a pound/dollar for times I've been at a railway station or airport with a long journey ahead and am bored of my ipod contents.

    It would be so cool to pop in to a store and update it with some funky new music that I could keep. :)
  4. DeSnousa macrumors 68000


    Jan 20, 2005
    Brisbane, Australia
  5. Shamus macrumors 6502a


    Feb 26, 2006
    What a great idea! But those systems can sometimes be SLOOOOWW.
  6. kenzbud macrumors member


    Oct 21, 2005
    Interesting concept, but it seems like there would be too many loop holes and complications. But I would be all for it.
  7. (L) macrumors 6502

    Nov 12, 2005
    Wow. I really doubt Apple saw this coming when they made the iPod as a portable music player...not a portable music PORTAL. I mean, really, I guess if there is a demand that's all it takes, but can't you just take your iPod with the music you want in it on to the plane? Lol..that's what it was built for.
  8. sam10685 macrumors 68000


    Feb 2, 2006
    Portland, OR
    i think they should provide us with free ipods.
  9. mymacluvsme macrumors member


    Jan 13, 2006
    concrete jungle
    I just wish they would get more internet access available on flights. Or at least power ports. sheesh- some airlines still don't even have that.
  10. deadturtle macrumors member

    Sep 7, 2005
    I can see it now

    Some wise guy hacks his ITMSinAir to the intercom. 'Soundtracks' the entire flight. Something like the track from Scream for takeoff, Sweet Home Alabama for the irony, a little techno to drive non-tech heads crazy, a little country to drive the rockers mad and a little rap to get everyone else. Something operatic for the landing! It would give a whole new meaning to 'hijacking' a plane!

    They have those? Which flights? I've never seen one, but I normally take bottom of the barrel flights. Easy power in airports would be nice too, while we are on the subject!
  11. 68164 Guest

    Feb 27, 2006
    inflight opportunities for iPods and iTMS

    Heaps of scope to add iPod integration to the inflight experience...I'd start with

    1/ charging
    2/ capability to connect 5G to screens on back of seats so you could view your iPod content on the bigger screen

    ability to purchase would be nice but I don't see the whole international issue as significant - as long as you have a valid iTMS account then it doesn't matter where I am when I make the purchase - I can't see how that would change with in flight

    Bring it on i say - starting with Qantas please Mr Jobs
  12. zigziggityzoo macrumors regular


    Nov 2, 2004
    Ann Arbor, MI
    Why can't the airlines make it part of the service to give you a CD of the music you bought? Problem solved.
  13. Noiseboy macrumors regular

    Dec 25, 2002
    Lurking nearby.
    Hhmmm, it's an interesting concept but as aircraft don't always fly return routes it would probably need some kind of country independant iTunes model that everyone could download from and I suspect that the greedy mutton heads at the record companies wouldn't wear it.
    I do think that, as Macca posted above, an input socket on the seatback screens allowing you to plumb in your iPod video to the bigger screen is an excellent idea and would be well worth putting to the poeple who manufacture these systems.
  14. Lollypop macrumors 6502a


    Sep 13, 2004
    Johannesburg, South Africa
    I like the idea to be able to plug in my 5th gen ipod and see the video on the seats screens!

    Also dont really see what the big deal is, you would have to have a acount first, so why not simple let someone buy a song as if they were in their own country, with appropraite taxes ect?? Have your seat be a little part of your own country while you purchase the song.
  15. notjustjay macrumors 603


    Sep 19, 2003
    Canada, eh?
    I think it would be cool to have unlimited, but temporary, access to the iTunes store.

    Consider it. Plug in your headphones and sample everything the iStore has to offer. Free of charge, or some premium attached to the flight (first class, etc). You don't get to keep any of it, though.

    There's a ton of music on the iTunes store that I'd love to listen to, but not all of it I'm willing to pay 99 cents to actually commit to buying. Here's a chance to try-before-you-buy. They could let you bookmark the songs you liked, and later when you log in from a land-line, you can purchase all those bookmarked tracks.

    It's a compromise with the unlimited-subscription model, but here's a venue where it would actually be practical. You're stuck on the plane for a few hours, so here's a prime opportunity where they've captured your attention. Not charging means skirting the tax and country boundary issues. It's very short term, by definition, which limits the amount of abuse it will get. I'm sure you'll get the unscrupulous few who will bring recording devices and try to rip off the store, but in a setting where you're paying hundreds of dollars for entry (e.g. the plane ticket), all your devices are being monitored (airport security), and you're only accessing it for a few hours anyway, a lot of these concerns are mitigated.

    I'd use it.

    Heck, they should do the same thing at Apple Stores!
  16. nagromme macrumors G5


    May 2, 2002
    I don't see how you would browse or shop effectively without a full iTunes interface and keyboard. Searching and browsing on my iPod would drive me mad. But maybe offering this to laptop users, or offering a limited shopping experience or something.
  17. twoodcc macrumors P6


    Feb 3, 2005
    Right side of wrong
    very interesting...but i don't see how it would work though
  18. Lollypop macrumors 6502a


    Sep 13, 2004
    Johannesburg, South Africa
    Now this idea I like!!! I really think with a nice toutch pad interface it could be really cool to see this on a plane. Have access to the itunes library, and be able to view certain movies as well. Wont be able to buy but the airlines provide a ton of content to their passangers and apple gets some free advertising and maybe a ipod sale at the end of the flight. win win situation all round!
  19. andrewcod macrumors newbie

    Jun 2, 2005
    There really isn't enough reason to do this, since many airlines already offer ways to listen to a variety of music in-flight. Take Singapore Airlines for instance. They have over 250 complete albums which anyone, in any class, can listen to. This collection is constantly updated with new songs from big-name artists, and best of all - its free to listen to the whole song, and you can even build your own playlists from the tracks provided. Now compare this with the proposed scheme with iTMS integration. Why would anyone want to pay so that they can access these same tracks? Also consider that even people without iTMS accounts can use the free system, whereas the iTMS system is only available to a relatively limited audience. So I ask you once again - is there really any reason anyone would want to pay to access an inferior service?
  20. steve_hill4 macrumors 68000


    May 15, 2005
    NG9, England
    I like the idea of listening to music unlimited, but not being able to purchase anything. I wonder what Apple would make of that kind of strain on their servers. The airliners would have to pay them a subscription to counter-balance this.

    It would certainly be the most sensible way of doing it. Country boundaries, tax, all get in the way.
  21. EricNau Moderator emeritus


    Apr 27, 2005
    San Francisco, CA
    I think they should just let everyone on the airplane listen (not download) to any full length song in the iTMS for free. (of course the airline would have to pay Apple) :p
  22. morespce54 macrumors 65816


    Apr 30, 2004
    Around the World
    I really doubt that airlines woudn't find a way to make you pay... :rolleyes: ;)
  23. savar macrumors 68000


    Jun 6, 2003
    District of Columbia
    Weird idea...

    Are they saying that they would replicate the entire iTMS library on each and every plane? That must be many terabytes of data. Imagine how long it would take to long flights already have on-demand consoles. Does anybody here really want to buy music while flying?
  24. EricNau Moderator emeritus


    Apr 27, 2005
    San Francisco, CA
    That is so true.

    I bet a lot of people would. There's nothing better to do. :(
  25. billyboy macrumors 65816


    Mar 15, 2003
    In my head
    Apple already get free advertising when flight attendants ask you to turn off phones laptops and iPods.

    I suppose if the airline picked up the bill ie charged the passenger direct from their credit card, that would get over the iTMS account problem. As for material there is no reason why US airlines couldnt offer the US store, UK airlines the UK store. People who dont like to buy music but wouldnt mind a browse could compile a wish list during the flight and have it saved either to their iTMS account which they access back "on land" or perhaps to give the airlines max benefit, the airline could email it to them - along with some marketing material of their own of course.

    I hope it takes off because I have stocks in a company that has an inflight internet product and it has bombed so bad it is unbelievable, but maybe this could resurrect it :eek:

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