The future of air travel includes giant seatback displays

Thales hopes a 21-inch touchscreen will keep you entertained during your flight.

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Zach Honig, The Points Guy
Zach Honig, The Points Guy
Airlines are increasingly embracing mobile devices for in-flight entertainment, and for a good reason -- a tablet is usually much nicer than the cramped, crude seatback systems you normally deal with. Thales thinks the industry can do better, though. It just previewed an in-flight entertainment system, Digital Sky, whose prototype gives each passenger a massive 21.3-inch touchscreen. The portrait orientation leads to some wasted space when you're watching videos, but it can do things that aren't realistic on tinier displays, like serving up the airline's magazine or highlighting things to do at your destination.

The exact specs might change, and there aren't any confirmed partners lined up yet. However, even this early version fits into the tight confines of economy class. While this kind of cabin upgrade likely won't be cheap for providers, you might not have to pay for a premium seat (or break out your own devices) just to do more than squint at a movie.

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