For one of the largest aircraft seating manufacturers a project is done to explore new future seating possibilities.
Aviation is a conservative world. Safety regulations, restrictions and international rules make it hard to be really innovative. To focus on the future with the traveler as end-user and to break free from patterns of the current aviation world, the Vision in Product design method (Hekkert & Dijk,2011) is used. In short, different sources are used to establish a future worldview that serves as a base for design. In this future world four types of long distance air travelers exist. These are future personas, each with their own needs and concerns.
To design for these future long distance air travelers a research is conducted to answer the following questions. Who exactly are these future air travelers and how do they interact? What are their needs and concerns? And when do they appreciate the time they have spent on an aircraft or perceive it as valuable?
The future world and the four persona’s is used as a stepping stone for further research. A questionnaire, role play and an inflight analysis gave answer to the following questions: Who exactly are these future air travelers and how do they interact? What are their needs and concerns? And when do they appreciate the time they have spent on an aircraft or perceive it as valuable? After an inept analysis of the data it was found that all four passenger types have one thing in common: They all find their time valuable if they spend their time with people they care about. which brings us to the design vision.
A passenger assigned space that suits the needs of different traveler groups.
Based on the conducted research and interests of the different stakeholders a seating configuration concept is created. It is a seating plan that enables travel groups to have a shared flying experience, by providing travel groups with their own special place. This concept makes the time spent in an aircraft more valuable for the travelers and increases the value of the seats.
Further elaboration on the concept and the research is not possible due to a confidentiality agreement with the company.