In 2019, Lufthansa Technik and LG Electronics launched the AERQ joint venture with the aim of significantly advancing the digital transformation in the aircraft cabin and enabling airlines to develop it into a space for their new ideas and business models. At the heart of this joint initiative is the cloud-based IT platform AERENA, a digital ecosystem of software, hardware and data. With D-AIUQ, the Lufthansa Technik facility in Berlin now equipped the very first aircraft with this system, an Airbus A320 from Discover Airlines.

This first installation was realized in a close innovation partnership between AERQ, Discover Airlines and the Lufthansa Group Innovation Runway. A recently issued Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) by EASA (European Union Aviation Safety Agency) has paved the way for the public trial, so that with the start of the summer schedule the first Discover Airlines passengers will be able to experience AERENA in flight. This test phase of the technology is scheduled to last at least three years and will serve to test various practical onboard applications in order to fully exploit the potential of AERENA.

Accelerating innovation allows us to continuously improve our customer experience and this collaboration is a great example of that. We are delighted and proud that our investment in state-of-the-art in-flight entertainment will be installed on our first aircraft together with our partners AERQ and Discover.

Xavier Lagardère
Vice President Innovation for Lufthansa Group and Managing Director of the Lufthansa Innovation Hub

Personalized offers and higher quality digital information for passengers

The platform, which is supported by a state-of-the-art cloud-based infrastructure, closely involves passengers throughout their entire flight. For example, they can benefit from personalized offers and higher quality digital information. On the one hand, AERENA encourages individual interaction with passengers through its PED-friendly environment (PED = Personal Electronic Device). On the other hand, the fixed system with a 14-inch high-resolution touchscreen and extensive PED connectivity at every seat takes the overall user experience to a new level. Thus, Discover Airlines offers its passengers a truly unique service for a narrowbody aircraft operated on medium-haul routes.

Discover will get to know their passengers’ needs even better

The airline itself also benefits significantly from AERENA. Unlike conventional in-flight entertainment systems, the system enables Discover to perform quick and convenient content adjustments itself, allowing the carrier to respond very quickly and flexibly to feedback from its guests, for example by promptly updating all digital content, from AVoD (audio/video on demand) to the graphical user interface. By intelligently capturing, analyzing and matching the data collected on board, the airline can also get to know the needs of its passengers better and respond to them in an even more targeted manner - even by providing completely new applications.

In addition to a large selection of films, series, podcasts, games and a moving map in 3D, the Get your Guide app is already available at the start of the test phase, allowing travelers to find out more about their destination and book tours already on the way. At the beginning of 2025, D-AIUQ will also be equipped with broadband internet, which will enable fast surfing, payment and booking functions, streaming, and the integration of many other services. As part of this, "Order to Seat" is also planned, a function that will allow guests to order and pay for food, drinks and products from the inflight shop via their inseat screen. The aim is to provide travelers with full connectivity during the flight.

Strong project support across the Lufthansa Group

The project is supported by the Lufthansa Group Innovation Runway. As the Group's innovation ecosystem, it promotes the search for innovative solutions within the Lufthansa Group and with external partners, bringing together ideas and implementers, facilitating experiments and providing funding.