Latest Rail News

07.06.16

Virgin introduces ground-breaking entertainment portal

Virgin is seeking to make its passenger experience more entertaining than ever, with a new app allowing customers to view free films and TV programmes during their journey.

Passengers who download the BEAM app will be able to use it to view films including Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Independence Day and Captain America: The Winter Soldier, TV programmes including House of Cards, Poldark and Fortitude, and magazines including Men’s Health, Total Film and Marie Claire. There will also be a special children’s section.

The launch even came with a bit of Hollywood glamour. A new train wrap to promote the film Independence Day: Resurgence was unveiled at London Euston yesterday to actors Liam Hemsworth and Jeff Goldblum and director Roland Emmerich.

Patrick McCall, Virgin Trains co-chair, said: “The new BEAM app will make our passengers’ journeys fly by, feeling like they’ve arrived at their destinations before they know it.”

BEAM is certainly an exciting new initiative. However, exciting technical ideas don’t always translate into reality. I was on a Virgin train yesterday when the conductor cautioned passengers who had downloaded their tickets on an online app to make sure they had them ready before the train departed, as they might not be able to get a signal once it was in motion.

In addition, yesterday also saw a Transport Select Committee inquiry into passenger experience.

Senior figures from the rail industry and passenger groups pointed out that passengers face more serious problems than a lack of entertainment, including unexplained delays and cancellations, overcrowding and poor information about tickets.

Virgin deserves to be commended for introducing an innovative way of making passenger experience more modern and exciting. However, this should not come at the expense of working to solve the industry’s ongoing problems.

(Image c. Virgin)

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Comments

GW   08/06/2016 at 16:34

How's about some peace and quiet rather than noise?

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