Lufthansa Systems is widening the number of companies that can use its BoardConnect platform for inflight entertainment and connectivity (IFEC), the company said at AIX in Hamburg.

A new arrival to the company’s BoardConnect portfolio is BoardConnect Dock. In the past Lufthansa Systems has provided a full turnkey package for IFE and connectivity, selling direct to airlines.

While that model works well, the company said it is increasingly accommodating companies outside the immediate aviation industry that have a product potentially of interest to airlines or their customers, but are unfamiliar with how to get it onboard an aircraft.

Depending on the partner, this might include a connectivity portal, classic IFE content or a platform with booking options and targeted advertising to generate additional revenue.

Spanish company Epteca, for example, provides destination-based content for holidaymakers, but has not previously had the know-how to place that in front of an airline passenger in their seat. The BoardConnect Dock platform fulfills that role, allowing companies like Epteca integrate their applications on to it.

Lufthansa Systems compares BoardConnect to the Lego children’s building block system; different blocks can be plugged into the platform to provide a new service.

Sometimes, Lufthansa Systems will identify potential new partners whose services it thinks would be of interest to airlines or passengers and reaches out to them; on other occasions, an airline with which Lufthansa Systems is working will suggest a company whose products would benefit from being on the platform.

Alan Dron