“One curious reader asks: ‘So, does this mean regular USB – or other non proprietary interfaces – will be supported as well? Is this another apple marketing scheme, or an honest attempt from the aviation industry to integrate personal entertainment?’
It’s a good question, deserving of a worthy answer. So I asked Panasonic director, product line management Marshal Perlman to break things down for us (who loves ya, baby?).
Perlman says: ‘Our IFE system supports a number of interfaces and the eXport jack only complements USB. In the case of Singapore Airlines, they offer both USB and eXport on their aircraft. This is something that we encourage all our customers to do and our system is easily able to support eXport and USB interfaces simultaneously if so desired by the airline.
‘The goal of Panasonic Avionics Corporation in creating the eXport jack was to provide airlines passengers with an easy to use solution for integrating personal entertainment devices with our IFE systems. The alternative to eXport would be an ‘octopus’ type cable that is less than elegant. The eXport initiative launched by Panasonic Avionics Corporation’s R&D; team and it is just the one of the many technology advancements that Panasonic plans on introducing.”