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United Airlines Expands IFE Options

United Airlines has expanded its personal device entertainment option to all aircraft with DIRECTV live streaming for purchase to provide at least one free entertainment option on all Wi-Fi equipped aircraft (which is any aircraft with more than 70 seats).

Between February and April of this year, the airline installed personal device entertainment onto more than 200 aircraft that previously only offered DIRECTV. Customers can now use a personal laptop, Apple iOS device or Android device to access a library of complimentary movies and TV shows, in addition to having the opportunity to purchase DIRECTV to view live programming.

“Whether it is seatback on-demand, DIRECTV or personal device entertainment, we offer customers hundreds of hours of programming to enjoy during their travels,” said Mark Krolick, vice president of marketing at United Airlines. “We’re excited to expand our personal device entertainment offering, which has been a popular option amongst many of our customers who tend to bring their own devices when they travel.”

To enhance personal device entertainment, on select flights during the busy summer travel season, United will distribute free cardboard phone stands which prop up devices and allow hands free viewing. The airline is also installing in-seat power outlets to help customers keep their devices charged while watching their favorite movies and shows.

United is also committed to improving the entertainment options for customers with disabilities. Earlier this year, the airline began offering a new main menu category on seatback on-demand that is labeled Accessible Entertainment. This new section makes it easier for customers with hearing and vision challenges to find accessible entertainment options, grouping all of the titles that are either audio descriptive or closed captioned in one main menu category. Seatback on-demand is one of United’s entertainment options available on 757, 767, 777 and 787 aircraft. The carrier currently offers approximately 20 different movies and TV shows that are audio descriptive and more than 50 that include English closed captioning. Select DIRECTV channels also include closed captioning when the TV station makes it available.

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