The ongoing debacle about Boeing’s alleged production safety issues is not the type of publicity the aviation industry wants right now. With domestic and international air travel already on an upswing let’s talk about some of the awesome stuff coming our way. At the 2024 Aircraft Interiors Expo in Hamburg, Germany attendees were given a glimpse of the MAYA concept.

Those who can only afford to fly coach can likely expect minor to no changes to our experiences. Meanwhile, for the rest seeking premium comfort with all the bells and whistles, Panasonic Avionics and Collins Aerospace might have something for them to look forward to. Until commercial supersonic services make a comeback, the wealthy want new ways to kill time until arrival.

Marketed to airlines that provide spacious suites for their more discerning clientele, the MAYA promises vibrant large-format visuals, immersive audio, and ergonomic seating. The star attraction is the 45″ OLED panel dubbed the Astrova Curve — the first of its kind with a 21:9 aspect ratio (CinemaScope) on a passenger plane.

“Based on seat geometry and viewing angles, MAYA delivers a 50 percent more immersive viewing experience than sitting in a theater,” claims Panasonic Avionics CEO Ken Sain. Even more fascinating is the acoustics, which purportedly do not require headphones. Perhaps, there is advanced soundproofing technology involved.

Furthermore, Collins Aerospace executive Ed Dryden stated, “Unprecedented customization and user control provides uniquely personal in-flight experiences—bridging historical gaps in accessibility, enabling multi-dimensional comfort, and facilitating immersive in-flight entertainment.”

Long-haul flights can be unbearable when you remain seated throughout the trip. Hence, the MAYA includes chairs with ARISE technology to minimize vibrations, tweak the temperature, and regulate cushion support pressure to keep things as cozy as possible. Sustainability is also a huge factor with the use of plant-based materials, STARLight composites, and other recycled components.

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Images courtesy of Collins Aerospace/Panasonic Avionics