Thales, leader in in-flight entertainment and connectivity (IFEC) systems, is pleased to announce that China Southern Airlines will install the leading edge Thales TopSeries AVANT IFEC system on its Boeing 777-300ER. The ten aircraft will be fitted with the system across all classes of service, with the first aircraft expected to enter in revenue service in February 2014.

This is the first major sale of the TopSeries AVANT system in the China region and the first selection of this new system for a B777 aircraft. This award represents a landmark victory by Thales in its efforts to further penetrate this significant growth market.

All seats on board China Southern’s B777 will be equipped with the award-winning Thales TouchPMU handheld device, which will allow passengers in all classes to control their IFEC system whilst utilising the dual screen for multi-task capability like they do on the ground.

Mr DONG Suguang executive vice president of China Southern Airlines commented: "As a leading airline operating the largest fleet in Asia-Pacific, China Southern is very pleased to introduce Thales IFEC system to its new long range B777-300ER fleet. China Southern attaches great importance to the in-flight entertainment which is to bring new market opportunity and business model.

"I’m convinced that the selection of Thales IFEC system will further contribute to the improvement of China Southern’s long-lasting fine services, enhance passenger experience and add more competitiveness to China Southern Airlines."

Commenting on the milestone, Alan Pellegrini chief executive officer for the Thales In-Flight Entertainment and Connectivity business said: "In-flight entertainment systems have a direct and lasting impact on customer perception and service excellence provided by an airline.

"Airlines such China Southern are enjoying record breaking growth and are therefore very keen to provide their passengers with the best and latest in-cabin experience, it is therefore very gratifying they have chosen TopSeries AVANT over all other products in the market to equip their newest and most advanced aircraft. We look forward to working closely with China Southern to help them in their continued success."

Olivier Guibert Thales country director, China added: "China is fast becoming a critical component of the international growth strategy for the entire Thales Group. The cutting edge systems developed by our IFEC business present one of the most visible and tangible proof points of our technological strengths.

"We are therefore delighted to be working with China Southern on this project, which further demonstrates Thales’s leadership position in civil aerospace civil aerospace technology development and service provision across this important region."