SIA launches new cabin products worth US$850m in investment

The spacious suites on its A380 will rival those of Middle Eastern rivals Etihad Airways and Emirates for the crown of the world's top first class, although unlike those airlines, Singapore Airlines has chosen not to install in-flight showers.

This comes as the airline's rivals have been introducing swanky new premium products, such as Qatar Airways' Business Class QSuites and Etihad Airways' The Residence.

Singapore Airlines is also improving its business class, premium economy and economy products in the newly fitted A380s, the first of which will start flying from Singapore to Sydney on December 18. Both classes will be on the upper deck.

This represents a capacity increase from SIA's two A380 configurations now flying.

The airline's current fleet of 20 A-380s has up to 441 seats each, including 333 in economy class.

Although the airline refused to sketch out its "new A380" route map after Sydney-Singapore, the popular Singapore-London route is tipped to be next in line from the second quarter of 2018.

"At Singapore Airlines we remain steadfast in our philosophy of constant product innovation and a relentless pursuit of excellence".

"Today's launch signifies our continued investment in product and services, our long-term approach to ensure that we continue to lead the industry and our confidence in the future of premium full-service travel".

For the first time, the new business class seats will allow those sitting in the aisle to convert their seats to a double bed, just like in first class. These five aircraft will replace SIA's five oldest A380s, which have started being returned to lessors.

They will enter service in December on the first of five new A380 aircraft joining its fleet, and the retrofit work will also take place on 14 existing aircraft, it said in a statement.

The number of suites, which were designed by Pierrejean Design Studio and manufactured by Zodiac Seats UK, has been halved from 12 to six. In addition to the bed and leather chair in the new Singapore Air suites, there'll be a full-sized wardrobe and double bathrooms, one of which has a sit-down vanity counter. (Jordan Chong) Singapore Airlines Suites features a seat that swivels 270 degrees.

Business-class passengers will have a 63.5 centimetre-wide seat that reclines directly into a full-flat bed of 198 centimetres.

However, there have been some new elements introduced in what is a seat designed from the ground up by JPA Design of the United Kingdom and manufactured Japanese firm JAMCO Corporation.

In economy class, passengers can expect more space and greater comfort through an improved design.

Further, the use of carbon composite materials to has enabled the seat structure to be thinner, which has created enough space to store a roller bag in the seat area rather than in an overhead locker.

Goh Choon Phong, Singapore Airlines' chief executive officer, is fending off intensifying competition, particularly from Middle Eastern carriers, such as Emirates, which in August introduced a revamped lounge inspired by private yacht cabins on its own A380s.

In 2007, Sydney was the destination for the A380's first-ever commercial flight on Singapore Airlines.

Premium Economy class' new look for SIA's Airbus 380.

An 11.1-inch touchscreen monitor eliminates the need for handsets, which is similar to what SIA now offers on its newer aircraft, including the A-350. The monitor has is also larger than what is flying on SIA's A380s now at 11.1in, compared with 10.6in.

Riding on the theme of "Space made personal, experience the difference", the new cabin offerings provide more space and privacy in all classes, featuring intimate and bespoke elements designed especially for its customers, the airline said. "We developed the product with the customer in mind".

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