Safran aims to seat premium air travelers in personal sound bubble
For folks who like to listen to music during long-haul flights, capable noise-canceling headphones are an essential carry on. But that may change for passengers in first class thanks to Euphony in-seat audio from Safran Seats and Devialet.
The goal of the Euphony project from the aircraft seating manufacturer that's part of aviation multinational the Safran Group and French high-end audio innovators Devialet is to deliver a top-notch individual sound experience to premium flyers without them needing to don a pair of headphones.
As the passenger sits back in their business class or first class seat to enjoy in-flight entertainment offerings, two bespoke speakers on each side of the headrest will envelop them in "high-fidelity sound that is clear and full-bodied" without affecting other passengers. The output will also automatically adapt to the audio content and ambient cabin noise in real-time, which suggests directional audio being employed.
Of course, aircraft cabins can be very noisy places, not only due to the constant hum of conversation, the revelry of excited tourists or the ear-piercing screams of unhappy infants but also the inevitable rumble of jet engines.
Noise-canceling headphones like the excellent WH-1000XM5s from Sony can help cut much of that back so travelers can focus on enjoying a musical journey to accompany the hop from one part of the world to another.
The Euphony tech doesn't claim to offer that kind of isolation but aims to deliver "high quality sound in every position of the seat" while still allowing easy communication with fellow passengers or cabin crew – though the mockup below does show the system installed in the company's Unity cubicle, which might well help prevent others being bothered by any potential sound leakage but doesn't exactly encourage the exchange of pleasantries with other travelers.
No further information has been made available at this point but Euphony technology is making its debut at the Aviation Interiors Expo at the Hamburg Messe in Germany this week, ahead of its first in-flight service outing in 2023.
Source: Safran Seats