Deezer has signed a deal with Emirates airline to give passengers access to exclusive in-flight playlists.
Deezer launched in the Middle East and North Africa last year in October. The French music streaming company signed a deal with Rotana — the Arab world’s largest record label.
It has since gained a following in the region, thanks to a broad geographical spread. The platform is now available in 22 countries, including the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and Morocco — as well as 180 countries worldwide.
The deal comes as many US-based airlines are abandoning seat-back entertainment.
A report from October says that American Airlines, United Airlines, and Alaska Air are removing in-flight entertainment options. American and United will keep seatback screens on a select handful of cross-country flights, though.
Most passengers carry a smartphone or a tablet with them for in-flight entertainment. But Patrick Brannelly, Division VP of Customer Experience for Emirates, says Deezer’s music playlists will fit right in.
“Emirates has supported the industry for many years by working with artists and record labels. Now we are pleased to be building relationships with music streaming services. Deezer offers us a new take on music curation with playlists featuring pop, rock, dance, Arabic Chillout, Khaliji Romance, Arabic EDM, and many more.”
Deezer’s playlists will be included in the Emirates’ ICE entertainment system. The ICE system offers passengers films, TV, games, flight tracking, and now exclusive playlists. Back in 2015, Emirates revamped its fleet to include new, larger seatback screens for its passengers.
Deezer CEO for MENA and Turkey Tarek Mounir waxed eloquently about the high-flying deal.
“Music has the power to transport us, and our curated music selection aims to get listeners to feel the thrill of discovery that comes from visiting new destinations and new experiences,” Mounir stated.