Noting the power of Emirates’ IFE offer, Daly noted: “As a customer, you can choose from over 1,000 audio and visual channels, 100 interactive games, 300 albums and every UK number one hit from the early 1950s. Not forgetting – in the event that you can’t find anything to watch or listen to – you also have the capacity to send and receive e-mail and SMS messages.”
He linked the breadth of that offer to the boom in Internet shopping and asked what airlines were doing to tap that opportunity. “If someone had suggested even as little as ten years ago that there would be billions of dollars transacted on the web by 2007, they would probably have been laughed at. Don’t you think that it is time to take notice and consider our own position?”
Over the next 18 months Emirates plans a range of developments and experiments including a new dedicated duty free website which will be featured on the IFE system. “It will display the full range of duty free product, will be fully interactive and be presented in a clear and attractive way making it as easy for our passengers to browse product on the web as if they were flipping through the brochure,” Daly said.