It’s all about weight – Delta’s new Phablet’s, Tablets & Slim line seats!

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Today Delta announced an upgrade to the smaller hand units the FAs have been using for a little while now to do things like charge you for a snack or drink (and can give you points too when things go wrong) to a larger “phablet”.  New features like selling upgrades in the air and more will be on tap soon.

But the idea is to save on weight. How much? A bunch when you add them all up. Delta says:

“Providing electronic access to the more than 500 page, five pound On-Board Manual carried by every flight attendant is expected to save more than $1 million annually in reduced fuel and printing costs while providing on board professionals a more intuitive way to access essential information.”

Just like the newer slim line seats that are so much lighter resulting in less fuel burn that any little bit they can save is money back to DAL shareholders. This is similar to the recent move to go digital soon in all the cockpits.

Not just weight savings but hopefully over time added features for pilots. However, some of the pilots I have spoken to are not all that impressed as the ones in the PR video. I think over time it will be a nice upgrade.

april sky magazine delta air lines delta points blog

My only question, as I have touched on before, is why Sky magazine and SkyMall are still worth filling up seat backs. If you think about how much weight hundreds of these add to a jet, why not just go digital and offer free access via GoGo and promote that. I would still like, as they had for a month, free downloads; this way the FA can announce to download now before takeoff while the boarding door is open. – René

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  1. My assumption is that the advertising dollars raised from SkyMall and Sky magazine offset fuel savings. I would guess at some point they would produce a digital version for the planes with monitors at some point, but that is just a guess. Screen size might be a bit small for most of us older travelers to be reading extensively. Would not mind free GoGo with pup-ups as an option…

  2. I agree with JohnSD’s first point.
    I am also somewhat glad that these magazines are provided in their ‘hardware’ version.
    If they went digital and removed the paper versions then this would mean one option less for me.
    I understand the fuel saving argument but I guess it’s about providing options for the passenger.

  3. >> Sky magazine and SkyMall are still worth filling up seat backs … why not just go digital and offer free access via GoGo and promote that.

    In theory that’s a great idea, but in reality, it’s a bad idea. GoGo service is slow and unreliable enough as it is without having everyone else on the plane using it. I’m paying for GoGo and all of the free stuff like shopping on eBay or Amazon sucks up the bandwidth from those of us that are actually trying to work and PAYING for the service. Unless they can do something to improve the bandwidth, I don’t see that working out very well in reality.

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