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iPod Seat-Back Video Coming To Flights 255

Posted by kdawson
from the world's-biggest-iPod-accessory dept.
cameronk writes, "Apple announced partnership agreements with Air France, Continental, Delta, Emirates, KLM, and United that will let you display video from your iPod on the screen of the seat in front of you. Plus, the connectors charge iPods throughout the flight. This will be great for inter-continental flights where even my iPod Nano runs out of juice. I wonder how the airlines are going to keep inappropriate video (i.e. porn or even just movies like "Snakes on a Plane" or "Alive") from appearing on the seat-back displays."
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iPod Seat-Back Video Coming To Flights

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  • Boeing... (Score:5, Funny)

    by CokeBear (16811) on Tuesday November 14, 2006 @02:10PM (#16840630) Journal
    Boeing: The world's largest iPod accessory manufacturer.

    747: The world's largest iPod accessory.
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by oskay (932940)
      Are you sure [timesonline.co.uk] about that?
      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by hurting now (967633)
        So it would be the largest commercially available product... and the warship would in essence be a government funded i-pod accessory, right?
  • Yes, please! (Score:2, Interesting)

    by BWJones (18351) *
    I wonder how the airlines are going to keep inappropriate video (i.e. porn or even just movies like "Snakes on a Plane" or "Alive") from appearing on the seat-back displays."

    That's funny as I was wondering the same thing when Apple's press announcement appeared in my inbox. Of course the issue of other movies like those you mentioned should not even be an issue as it is content that the user has loaded on their own iPods (and you should not be looking at your neighbors content anyhow). As to porn and oth
    • Re:Yes, please! (Score:4, Insightful)

      by brusk (135896) on Tuesday November 14, 2006 @02:27PM (#16840964)
      Pretty much the same way they keep your from looking at Penthouse centerfolds or playing porn on your mini DVD player. Social pressure plus, I'd assume, a polite (at least initially) request from the crew. In this case, it works. There's nothing new here in this respect.
    • by El Torico (732160) on Tuesday November 14, 2006 @02:35PM (#16841122)
      Video iPod - $250
      Label Maker - $27
      Scaring the crap out of unsuspecting passengers with the new "pilot's view display" and footage from the nose of a cruise missle - Priceless.
    • by CrazyTalk (662055)
      How is this different from bringing porno mags onboard, which you can do now, and having people look over you shoulder at them? Not at all - it's a non-issue.
    • It's not the inappropriate videos we should worry about... it's the new undercover MPAA air marshals who will be watching out for anyone allowing other passengers to see any movie that they haven't paid to see. There will be a new MPAA box for you to deposit $5 into on your way off the plane if you watched the movie on the screen of the person next to you... The marshals are watching, you'd better pay up!
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by stunt_penguin (906223)
      How to keep inappropriate content off seatback displays?

      One word : Tasers.
  • Privacy Filters? (Score:4, Informative)

    by dsginter (104154) on Tuesday November 14, 2006 @02:11PM (#16840646)
    Just a hunch. [3m.com]
  • by s31523 (926314) on Tuesday November 14, 2006 @02:16PM (#16840710)
    You have to use a "special" FAA approved cable to connect to the video input of the screen as well as the charging unit. The airline will provide this to you for $5 which includes the rental price of the monitor.
    • If true, it's still a good deal
    • by Steve525 (236741)
      You have to use a "special" FAA approved cable to connect to the video input of the screen as well as the charging unit. The airline will provide this to you for $5 which includes the rental price of the monitor.

      Is that a one time purchase, or am I actually just renting the cable? $5 per flight is a little steep, but not horrible depending on the length of the flight. If it's a one time purchase, then who cares, (except for the fact that now you have to carry around the extra cable)?

      Or, are you just jokin
      • by s31523 (926314)
        Oh sorry.. I am just guessing. Remember when the airlines had music that you could listen to, but the connection was that weird 2-pronged thing that only worked with the special headsets, which they charged $3 for. You got to keep the headset though, but you undoubtedly threw it out...
  • So how long until we get ipod connectors for samsung's machine gun sentry robots [youtube.com]? They could even use that song "let the bodies hit the floor" in the commercial.
  • same issue (Score:4, Insightful)

    by flynt (248848) on Tuesday November 14, 2006 @02:17PM (#16840740)
    Don't airlines already have the same issue with laptops? Those have approximately the same angle from screen to the eyes of person next to you, especially in coach. My guess is it won't be an issue. Perhaps if a polite request doesn't make you stop, they can disable your screen from the front?
    • Yeah, what's the etiquette for looking at porn on your laptop while flying? I've never done it but I'm not the kind of guy who would do that in public. I've never seen it done either.
      • by soft_guy (534437) on Tuesday November 14, 2006 @02:58PM (#16841536)
        Yeah, what's the etiquette for looking at porn on your laptop while flying?

        You are supposed to ask the woman next to you if she wants to joint the mile high club. Do that while pointing at your laptop screen. It is sure to impress her.
      • by shakah (78118)
        FWIW, I ran into a similar situation while flying back to the US from Germany on Lufthansa a few years back. The guy across the aisle from me leafed through some very graphic porno mags at different times during the flight. I found it odd, but wrote it off to different societal norms (I assume from his speech and the context of the flight that he was German). I didn't notice anyone else reacting to it, either.
  • Snakes on a plane? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Roadmaster (96317) <roadmr@tomechang o s u b a n a n a.com> on Tuesday November 14, 2006 @02:19PM (#16840786) Homepage Journal
    Why would this movie, or Alive, or even United 93 or Twin Towers be inappropriate? it's not like I'm going to show it to a hysteria-prone man on the brink of snapping and hijacking the plane. If I have it on my iPod I know what it's about and I maintain full control to turn off the movie at any time.

    Gee, it's not like watching it is actually going to make snakes appear in the plane. Plus, I don't think it'd be nearly as bad as depicted in the movie.
    • Why would this movie, or Alive, or even United 93 or Twin Towers be inappropriate? it's not like I'm going to show it to a hysteria-prone man on the brink of snapping and hijacking the plane.

      Yeah, it's no more inappropriate than watching "The Towering Inferno" in a crowded theatre.
    • Why would this movie, or Alive, or even United 93 or Twin Towers be inappropriate?

      Because they may upset some people. This is why you'll NEVER see any of those films on a plane. Lots of things are edited out of the special airplane-versions of movies. Take "The Abyss" for example. The start of the film is missing, where the submarine sinks. Apparently the reason for this is the imagery of people on a long cylindrical tube dying.

      I remember once watching a movie on a flight, I think it was "The Man In Th

  • by gsslay (807818) on Tuesday November 14, 2006 @02:20PM (#16840806)
    I'm more interested in Zune compatability. Can I use Zune's great wifi capabilities to exchange MP3s with the onboard flight navigation system? They're DRMed to 3 days, but when your life expectancy is 1 hour max, who cares?!

    And when we crash, we'll go down grooving.

    • by CastrTroy (595695) on Tuesday November 14, 2006 @02:47PM (#16841314) Homepage
      Ok, you got modded funny, but why not put a regular USB port on the seat back, and allow people to hook up any USB mass storage device, and play the media from that. Make it a Linux MPlayer thing and it would be able to play just about anything. Why do companies keep on locking themselves into one device when it would be much easier to support a large number of devices. If they're worried about DRM on the files, then work out a deal with apple so that they can decrypt the files on the iPod.
      • by Myself (57572) on Tuesday November 14, 2006 @02:55PM (#16841474) Journal
        Or better yet, an NTSC or VGA input so any old device could drive it, including iPods. Imagine that. No codec problems, no DRM issues, etc. Provide 12vDC power the same way they've always done. If they want to rent iPod-specific cable sets for video and charging, that's fine.
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by EvilNTUser (573674)

        "Why do companies keep on locking themselves into one device when it would be much easier to support a large number of devices."

        Yeah, that was my first reaction too; this is a horrible development. The future could offer wonderful potential for ubiquitous connectivity, but policies like these will only ensure that actually interfacing with devices in practice will be harder than ever. We'd be better off with RS-232, frankly.

        • by British (51765)
          We'd be better off with RS-232, frankly.

          If I had mod points, I would have modded your post Funny.
      • by jcr (53032)
        Why do companies keep on locking themselves into one device when it would be much easier to support a large number of devices.
        They're supporting the largest number of devices they can. Perhaps you meant the widest variety of models?

        The long and short of it is, the airlines have made a sensible business decsion. There are many tens of millions of iPods, and the others combined don't amount to a hill of beans.

        -jcr

      • allow people to hook up any USB mass storage device, and play the media from that.

        Unless you seriously restrict the types of media that can be played, this system will be vulnerable for all kinds of malicious software.

        Make it a Linux MPlayer thing and it would be able to play just about anything.

        Have you veer wondered why there is no Linux distribution comming with mplayer binaries that play almost everything?

        Why do companies keep on locking themselves into one device when it would be much easier to support
        • by Golias (176380)
          Unless you seriously restrict the types of media that can be played, this system will be vulnerable for all kinds of malicious software.

          Well, we wouldn't want display monitors infected with malicious software, so I guess you're...

          Hey, waitaminute!
      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by cmdr_beeftaco (562067)
        Have you actually been on a plane in the last 2 years. It is freaking crazy how many ipods there are. So are you proposing a Media Center PC in every seat back. USB carries data not video.
      • by 2nd Post! (213333)
        The problem, I have been told, is that the Zune does not appear as a mass storage device.

        This solution addresses 90% of the population and is simpler than a "file browser" type solution.
  • I've got an idea (Score:5, Insightful)

    by meeotch (524339) on Tuesday November 14, 2006 @02:25PM (#16840900) Homepage
    I wonder how the airlines are going to keep inappropriate video (i.e. porn or even just movies like "Snakes on a Plane" or "Alive") from appearing on the seat-back displays."

    How about by /asking/ people not to? Or a little sign that says, "Please be aware of your neighbors and/or their children, and do not watch video that may disturb them." Sheesh.

    Offtopic, but - who's up for a "no kids" airline? I'd definitely pay an extra $10 per flight to ensure there aren't any crying babies onboard.

    • by Bazman (4849) on Tuesday November 14, 2006 @02:52PM (#16841438) Journal
      A wit once said there were two classes of travel, 'First Class', and 'With Children'.

    • by soft_guy (534437)
      I have never been bothered by children on an airplane. I think certain people just hate children. And I think those people are jerks.
      • Depends on the kids. Some young ones, especially infants cannot cope with the ear-popping and cry the whole flight. Being near one of them can be a nightmare on a long flight. However, the last flight I was on there were two really young kids in the seats in front on me and the only noise I heard was them having fun. That I can happily live with.
    • Re:I've got an idea (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Speare (84249) on Tuesday November 14, 2006 @03:04PM (#16841636) Homepage Journal

      Kinda weird how you first seemed almost humanist, what with your suggestion to communicate and use common sense in social situations. Then you turn a quick 180 and suggest artificial class barriers to society like "with children" vs "you." Sure, some kids are annoying because they don't understand why their ears are hurting. Some people in seat 13B are annoying because they like watching the climax of "Airport 1977" on a bigscreen laptop and can't understand why it might be a bit anxiety-inducing for their neighbors. If you can live with one but not the other, what does that say about you?

    • by Sax Maniac (88550) on Tuesday November 14, 2006 @03:04PM (#16841658) Homepage Journal
      Personally, I'm up for a no fat people airline. And no smelly people. And no people with brown skin. And no Mormons! Or old people, they're too slow.
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by cmdr_beeftaco (562067)
        With the recent airline cutbacks, the lack of pillows has me appreicating fat people more and more. If only they didn't sweat so much.
    • The crying babies can be offset by a decent set of headphones and the iPod jackup. Apple has you covered...
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      Offtopic, but - who's up for a "no kids" airline? I'd definitely pay an extra $10 per flight to ensure there aren't any crying babies onboard.


      I've always assumed that virgin airlines would be the natural ones to take up that cause.

      -Grey [wellingtongrey.net]
    • by nblender (741424)
      "Offtopic, but - who's up for a "no kids" airline? I'd definitely pay an extra $10 per flight to ensure there aren't any crying babies onboard."

      What, you were never a kid? Hatched when you were 24? I'm up for a "no intolerant assholes" airline. In fact, why don't you just stay home so the rest of us don't have to deal with you.

      • by Grishnakh (216268)
        I was a kid once, but I never flew on a plane until I was around 10 years old, well past the age of crying. I'm not that old, either; I imagine many other people here (at least all those 30+) are the same way.
    • by Shag (3737)
      Offtopic, but - who's up for a "no kids" airline? I'd definitely pay an extra $10 per flight to ensure there aren't any crying babies onboard.


      How much extra would I have to pay for cabin crew who aren't twice my age, and can fit down the aisle without difficulty? I support the idea of flight attendants having unions, but I wish people didn't perceive it as a career they should do 'til their teeth fall out
  • by nganju (821034) on Tuesday November 14, 2006 @02:26PM (#16840954)
    You can get on a plane, open up your laptop and play inappropriate video right now. I don't think this has been a huge problem so far, and I don't see how ipod-seat-back-video makes this problem any worse.
    • Yeah, you can also pull out a Hustler magazine and read it. Magazine technology's been around even longer! People don't view pornographic material in public because in most countries there are laws and customs that discourage it. Although I've heard it's tolerated in Japan.
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by Aceticon (140883)

        Yeah, you can also pull out a Hustler magazine and read it

        Even beter, you can: loudly comment on the boobs of the models; tell everybody around you how last month's centerfold was much beter and proceed to explain why; comment on how you can just see that "that one ain't a real blonde"; digress into a loud monologue about the difficulties of masturbating on an airplane bathroom while holding a Hustler.

        The possibilities are limitless!!!
  • by jsebrech (525647) on Tuesday November 14, 2006 @02:27PM (#16840966)
    I wonder how the airlines are going to keep inappropriate video (i.e. porn or even just movies like "Snakes on a Plane" or "Alive") from appearing on the seat-back displays.

    The same way they keep you from running up and down the plane mid-flight shouting "we're all gonna die!".

    Besides, it's not even necessarily the passengers who rile up things. A few years ago I was on a plane waiting for take-off where the stewardess figured that the best solution to calm pre-take-off nerves would be to put on the radio through the cabin speakers. Much to her surprise, the song playing at that very moment was "killing me softly", and you can all have a guess which words came out of the speakers first...
  • I wonder how the airlines are going to keep inappropriate video (i.e. porn or even just movies like "Snakes on a Plane" or "Alive") from appearing on the seat-back displays."

    I'll wager they'll do it just the same way that they would handle a person that is playing inappropriate video on their 15" laptop sitting on the tray table in front of them. My guess is that would be to ignore it unless a passenger complains, then politely ask the viewer to turn it off.

    Personally, were I a flight attendant, I would di

  • I would just be happy if they made the seats big enough and with enough leg room so that I wouldn't feel like I'm packed in like a sardine. Anything else is just a way to distract us from thinking about how much flying sucks.
  • laptop argument (Score:2, Insightful)

    by ottc777 (1027218)
    laptop use is slightly different. It's usually low enough and in a position that only someone sitting directly beside you or behind you (cracks in the seat) can see the crap you're watching. The screens on the seatbacks are up higher and at greater visability. I bet there's going to be at least one 733t dork who will feel it necessary to play a 0-day movie to show off his h@xor sk1llz.
  • by dimer0 (461593) on Tuesday November 14, 2006 @02:47PM (#16841328)
    ... Microsoft to buy Quantas Airlines - Quantas will be first to have z00n wireless
  • by mirio (225059) on Tuesday November 14, 2006 @02:55PM (#16841490)
    This is a clever way for the airlines to bypass the MPAA's atrocious licensing fees for movies stored on the aircraft's entertainment system. If the airline doesn't 'own' the copy, they aren't responsible. I predict the MPAA will soon be having shit fits over this system.
  • ie vs eg (Score:5, Informative)

    by Myopic (18616) on Tuesday November 14, 2006 @02:58PM (#16841526)
    The poster uses "ie" to list inappropriate content for airplanes, but he is mistaken: instead, he wants "eg". "Ie" introduces an exhaustive list, or restates the category completely, whereas "eg" provides examples within the category. So, he gives the category as inappropriate content, and lists three possible types of inappropriate content, so he should use "eg".

    The latin phrase for "eg" is "exempli gratia", or, in English, "gratuitous example", which is to say, an example which helps explain the intent of the sentence.

    The latin phrase for "ie" is "id est", or, in English, literally "that is", which means you are restating the thing to make the intent clear.

    I don't really blame the poster, who might not care about this distinction, a common mistake amongst Americans, but the Slashdot editors sure as hell should care, being that they are paid to provide that service. That's an old complaint, though, and it's fairly clear the editors don't care either.
    • by slashdotwriter (972437) on Tuesday November 14, 2006 @03:22PM (#16842014) Journal
      at least do it right: 1. Learn Latin so you understand the grammatical structure and meaning of the expression "exempli grata". 2. Learn how to spell: "i.e.", "e.g.". Without the abbreviating periods, the sequences of letters "ie", "eg" don't mean anything in English. "Latin" should be capitalized in English.
      • by dodongo (412749)
        QED, bitch!
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Myopic (18616)
        touche with the periods and punctuation, which are bad-english liberties i often take in my own writing, and even though it is a valid complaint, i often see i.e. and e.g. given without periods, especially when set off with parentheses and commans (eg, in this sentence). in my grandparent post, i set them off with quotes.

        but i disagree with your complaint about my translation of e.g., which my dictionary gives as literally 'for the sake of example', and i think is fairly translated 'gratuitous example', and
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by jdcook (96434)
      Ray "Bones" Barboni: "Let me explain something to you. Momo is dead. Which means everything he had now belongs to Jimmy Cap, including you. Which also means, when I speak, I speak for Jimmy. E.g., from now on, you start showing me the proper fuckin' respect."

      Chili Palmer: ""E.g." means "for example". What I think you want to use is "i.e."."

      Ray "Bones" Barboni: "Bullshit! That's short for "ergo"."

      Chili Palmer: "Ask your man."

      Bodyguard: "To the best of my knowledge, "e.g." means "for example"."

      Ray "Bones" Bar
  • Just as long as it doesn't lead to THIS! [roughlydrafted.com]
  • While "zoon" craters. I love it.
    -jcr

  • KLM? Air France? (Score:3, Informative)

    by SillyNickName4me (760022) <dotslash@bartsplace.net> on Tuesday November 14, 2006 @03:09PM (#16841764) Homepage
    According to this Dutch news site [www.nu.nl] Air France and KLM said they were not aware of such a deal with them.
    • If KLM does support the iPod, I hope they change the LCD screens. When the person in front of you reclines the seat a bit, the angle of the LCD makes it impossible to view the LCD. There is no means to adjust the viewing angle of the LCD sufficiently to accomodate the tilt of the seat back.

      Since most people recline their seatbacks, the LCDs that KLM uses are basically useless.

  • I wonder how the airlines are going to keep inappropriate video (i.e. porn or even just movies like "Snakes on a Plane [CC]" or "Alive [CC]") from appearing on the seat-back displays.

    Yeah, we've only had portable DVD players for about eight years, so the issue has never come up before. I assume they'll put several viewing enforcement marshalls on every flight - that's the most straightforward answer, anyway.
  • by rwx (41027) on Tuesday November 14, 2006 @03:32PM (#16842202) Homepage
    every ten minutes when they announce that the beverage cart will be starting soon? That's one reason I prefer my own entertainment device: I decide when to hit pause.
  • by nege (263655)
    I wonder how the airlines are going to keep inappropriate video (i.e. porn or even just movies like "Snakes on a Plane" or "Alive") from appearing on the seat-back displays.

    I would imagine in the same way they keep people from reading hustler magazines on the flights - social humiliation and common decency. Besides, in this post 9/11 world, you *really* don't want to mess with flight attendants.
  • I'm on track to fly about 100,000 miles this calendar year, maybe more. I almost never go to the movies, largely because I know I'll see them all on planes. It's gotten to the point where I'll see a movie on an intercontinental flight one week, the be disappointed by it being on other flights in subsequent weeks, since I've already seen it.

    (In-flight magazines also get really old, really fast, when you're doing several flights on an airline in the space of a month.)

    Being able to bring a bunch of my own vi

It is wrong always, everywhere and for everyone to believe anything upon insufficient evidence. - W. K. Clifford, British philosopher, circa 1876

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