Wednesday, November 21, 2012

To Be Or Not To Be! The 787 Question

"To be, or not to be: that is the 787 question:

"Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune,
Or to take arms against a sea of troubles,
And by opposing end them? To die: to sleep;
No more; and by a sleep to say we end
The heart-ache and the thousand natural shocks
That flesh is heir to, 'tis a consummation
Devoutly to be wish'd. To die, to sleep;
To sleep: perchance to dream: ay, there's the rub;
For in that sleep of death what dreams may come"

William H Shakespeare: Speaking About 9 Across Seating In Economy

Is this the theme that Boeing travails over when selling its Aircraft to airlines, who in return "sardines" its passengers in economy?  United has done that on its first 787-8 and the passengers have a say! "It's not any different than what we are flying on now because it lacks space." Nine across is too tight, and windows are too high", and so forth. It is sad to hear Boeing hand over its aircraft to any airline, and not take advantage of billions of dollars of Boeing's technological advances that were invested, while airlines cram customers together with a dream and a promise, using a similar line Boeing uses, but then those same airlines do not deliver on it, for the sake of extra revenue. They should buy a -9 and go 9 across adding more leg room. A dash 8 should have an 8 across in a plus section for discerning travelers, and then go nine in the cattle call economy section, with a warning on the overhead display, Warning: all passengers beyond this point sit like a 737 and fly like a 787 good luck".  Passengers will have a way getting what they pay for, and then complaints are no way!  Check your cheap ticket price and decide if you want to pay a little more for 787 style points.  After all, it's your choice no complaints, please.

ANA's Domestic Configuration Nine Across
Note narrower seats with 3-3-3, than eight across(2-4-2) shown below for the ANA International Configuration.  ANA tries to balance according to purpose. United Airlines maintains 3-3-3 in Economy Plus. However, stretching the legs and crimping the shoulders. I hope leg room moves forward on the -9 for all passengers.

Link to passengers unhappy with what United did to a Dream  

The "To Be" Part 
Boeing has a grand dream and airlines have a business model. Both need the dream and the business model to get on the same page, otherwise, passengers will blame Boeing for what the Airlines did to the aircraft as far as the intrinsic value, and reputation of the 787. "Its just not a great plane when packing it like a commuter plane on a milk run." To those who sit in back, upgrade to plus section for a better seat, Don't expect a premium experience in economy on a premium aircraft. Expectations by Boeing are set at the Business class level, they used it on potential airline customer during its sales pitch.  In reality, you are going for a ride on a great airplane in a cramped seat, while struggling to get your chin to the window, unless the plane goes into a steep bank after take-off. That is the "To Be Part" until carriers get it right, and use the aircraft as intended.

United Airlines' pleasure craft bridges sensibilities by a plus the legs theme, and not the shoulders. Pay a little more for stretching out better on long flights. Customers really need an understanding and gain better expectations before buying a ticket. Not every seat is first class just because its a Dream liner.

United's Play Book Below
The Not To Be Part

The unseen stuff such as breathing,  lower cost maintenance cost, and fuel economy is the feel-good psychological real element read in the brochure, where it makes you feel better emotionally, but that vision is blotted out of view in your cramp quarters of economy. Because you are stuffed in, then the "so what" attitude perks up, and you miss out on all the advantages, Boeing has worked so hard on, for so many years. That Dream becomes a Not To Be, a human sacrifice pitched on the corporate bottom line of more revenue seats.

ANA's Eight Across
No To Be Out West, But a Leader Showing The Way

As the poet says, "Devoutly to be wish'd. To die, to sleep;

To sleep: perchance to dream: ay, there's the rub;

For in that sleep of death what dreams may come"

WHS: footnote:

Nine Across is a missed opportunity for making customers dream, but stockholders pleased with their own wit.