In-flight entertainment systems could be expanded to include iTunes according to a report in Flight Global. Thales and Panasonic are in talks with Apple, trying to convince them of the value of such a deal but I would imagine that for Apple, the presentation, user experience and how in-flight track purchases are synchronised with home computer purchases are as important as the financial benefits. It would be a big jump forward for the service and a seemingly natural hook-up. The move is being driven by aircraft manufacturers who want to expand the entertainment offerings and have requested iPod docks, USB ports etc to allow in-flight music system to be direct from plane to Pod, where at the moment it’s tied to those with wireless-enabled laptops.

“We’ve had lots of discussions with Apple,” said Thales vice-president and in-flight systems general manager Brad Foreman last week at Aircraft Interiors Expo in Hamburg. “The key is to get them to see the value of hosting iTunes on an aircraft. Is it a big enough market for them to be interested in? I’d try to do it tomorrow if they said yes.”

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