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✨ Polaris (& PP) Retrofits: Schedule, ....

Old May 29, 2017, 1:21 pm
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Last edit by: kirkwoodj
Check the current status of aircraft reconfigured (or delivered) with new Polaris seats: http://view.ceros.com/united/polaris...-desktop-4/p/3.

A Polaris Update and Polaris Mod Schedule to indicate the status of specific aircraft are maintained by those that manage the United Airlines Fleet Website.

Except for 773- and 781-operated flights, and those markets selling Premium Plus, Polaris-equipped planes have not been allocated to specific routes. You won't know until approx. 36-48 hours before departure if you'll have a newly reconfigured aircraft, and even then, it may be replaced with a non-retrofitted aircraft.

777-300ER - All 22 aircraft have Polaris (60 seats) and installation of Premium Plus cabins (24 seats) is complete.

767-300ER - As of September 2020, 31 of the 38 aircraft have been reconfigured with the Polaris seats.
- Retrofit is from 3-cabin to 2-cabin with direct-aisle-access seats. No 3-cabin 767s remain in service.
- 76A configuration is 30J/50Y+/134Y, total of 214; fleet to consist of 17 ships (former 3-cabin 767s).
- 76L configuration is 46J/22PE/47Y+/52Y; fleet to consist of 21 ships (18 former 2-cabin 76C and 3 used ships from Hawaiian).

767-400ER - [16 aircraft] None updated yet; modifications put on hold due to Covid-19.

777-200ER - As of September 2020, 46 of the 50 aircraft have been reconfigured with Polaris and Premium Plus seats.
- Configuration is 50 Polaris seats, 32 in the front cabin and 18 in the second cabin (behind 2L/R)
- Configuration is 10 across in economy, with 24 Premium Plus seats, 46 86 E+ seats and 156 E seats, with E+ in front economy cabin plus exit rows and bulkhead at 3L/R, i.e., almost the same as current pmCO planes, except with 4 seats in middle section.
- Seat map (v5) on united.com

787-8, 787-9 - As of November 2022, all 787-8/9 are converted or in mod. No chance of flying old configuration anymore.
- 788 configuration has 28 Polaris seats (20 in front cabin, 8 in rear mini-cabin), and 21 Premium Plus seats (2-3-2).
- 789 configuration has 48 Polaris seats (32 in front cabin, 16 in rear mini-cabin), and 21 Premium Plus seats (2-3-2).

787-10 - 13 787-10s have been delivered in 2020. All come with Polaris and Premium Plus cabins factory-installed. Another 19 should be added by 2024.

FAQ:
Q: Does a Polaris ticket mean the aircraft has the new Polaris seat?

A: No, Polaris is the label UA uses for long haul international business class. It is also the label UA uses for the new seats, so this does create some confusion.
All the 773s and 787-10s are 100% the new seat.
The rest of the long haul fleet in various stages of conversion, see http://view.ceros.com/united/polaris...-desktop-4/p/3

Q: How to tell if my aircraft is the new style Polaris seats?
A: If the unassigned business class section is showing orange seats or all the seats are side-by-side or there is a section for 4 adjacent seats in the middle, this is an old style lie-flat aircreaft
If the unassigned bussines class seats are dark blue seats or the all the seats appear to have direct aisle access, then you aircraft is the new Polaris seat.
You can also look at the FT maintained, United Fleet Site and crosscheck the tail number or check thePolaris Update tab

Q: How to tell if my aircraft has the new PremiumPlus (PP) / Premium Economy seats?
A: If the unassigned seats just behind business class are purple seats or the aircraft is 773 or 787-10, then yes. However, the purple color seat will only show on routes where PP is being sold.
Aircraft with PP seats are being used on some routes but are not being sold as PP. In those cases, the seats are considered to be a part of E+. In those cases, an indicator of PP sold as E+ will be if the first few rows of economy, there are just 2 seats on the sides (with the rest of E+ showing 3 seats).

Q: Will the aircraft I see at booking be the same configuration at flight time?
A: Unfortunately with the fleet in transit, aircraft swaps happen. UA tends to use placeholders until 2 days before travel and even after that last minute swaps do happen.

Q: My flight seat map shows 772 with polaris seats is it a retrofit?
A: Possibly. The flight status page shows the most accurate scheduled aircraft. If a 77W is swapped in, it will list the aircraft as 777-300ER. However, if the 772's seatmap shows blue rectangular boxes in the business class cabin instead of orange "pointy rounds", this would indicate that a retrofit aircraft has been swapped.

See also: United Future/Changed Routes w/ Polaris seats

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✨ Polaris (& PP) Retrofits: Schedule, ....

Old Mar 27, 2017, 7:07 am
  #226  
 
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Well looks like our bloggers such as OneMileAtaTime (Lucky) and View from the Wing have some information about (2) 77Ws being placed into storage because of this and a delay till the 1st half of 2018 to start retrofitting the 777-200s with the new Polaris seats.

http://viewfromthewing.boardingarea....293.1474669551

http://onemileatatime.boardingarea.c...d-777-storage/
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Old Mar 27, 2017, 9:09 am
  #227  
 
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What a disaster. They are having to mothball brand-new planes?
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Old Mar 27, 2017, 9:31 am
  #228  
 
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Originally Posted by PsiFighter37
What a disaster. They are having to mothball brand-new planes?
Yup this is embarrassing. I wonder what Oscar will do.
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Old Mar 27, 2017, 9:45 am
  #229  
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Maybe they should have sourced two different suppliers instead of depending on just one.
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Old Mar 27, 2017, 10:03 am
  #230  
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Originally Posted by wco81
Maybe they should have sourced two different suppliers instead of depending on just one.
Or not wasted the cost of developing a new J seat and just grabbed the B/E aerospace off-the-shelf version.

From the reviews (haven't been on Polaris personally) it doesn't seem like the improvement is worth the headache that this has caused / will continue causing vs. an off-the-shelf B/E Aerospace Super Diamond.

They could've still re-branded as Polaris and overhauled the soft product (as they have done).
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Old Mar 27, 2017, 10:09 am
  #231  
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I am not in the industry, but my understanding is there only a few vendors who are in this space. And I believe the proprietary design couldn't be easily shopped out to another vendor. This is pretty specialized stuff.

I am more interested in the terms of the agreement between United and Zodiac and what penalties and contingencies are delineated for these types of delays. This will get costly, and quick. Wonder how much room Zodiac has to absorb these costs and their ongoing viability? Zodiac going out of business would also be really bad for United.
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Old Mar 27, 2017, 10:09 am
  #232  
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Originally Posted by Duke787
Or not wasted the cost of developing a new J seat and just grabbed the B/E aerospace off-the-shelf version.

From the reviews (haven't been on Polaris personally) it doesn't seem like the improvement is worth the headache that this has caused / will continue causing vs. an off-the-shelf B/E Aerospace Super Diamond.
I wonder what it would take for them to follow AA, and pull the contract form Zodiac in favor of an off-the-shelf product (like the Super Diamond).
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Old Mar 27, 2017, 10:30 am
  #233  
 
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Originally Posted by PsiFighter37
What a disaster. They are having to mothball brand-new planes?
"Mothballed" is hardly a technical term... it's not as though Boeing is getting ready to park these birds in Mojave. To be precise, Boeing is following an approved short-term storage procedure (by definition <60 days) and moving the airplane to another part of the airport to make room for other frames coming off the line. Engines and other openings will likely be covered up to prevent foreign objects or animals from finding their way in, and the airplane will be periodically cycled on to ensure everything stays in working order. The process is designed to permit reactivation in a short period of time.

My understanding is this is also driven by a ramp space crunch at PAE, and these airplanes take up a lot of real estate!
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Old Mar 27, 2017, 10:31 am
  #234  
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Originally Posted by Kacee
I wonder what it would take for them to follow AA, and pull the contract form Zodiac in favor of an off-the-shelf product (like the Super Diamond).
I think that would a worst case scenario for UA. They've hyped up this specific seat so much the past few months, just ditching it would really make them look bad. I don't remember AA hyping up their seat so switching to a new manufacturer wasn't a big deal.
We now have to wait and see what UA management deems is a better outcome, switching to another seat after all the polaris seat advertising, or taking even longer for the aircraft to get the polaris seats.
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Old Mar 27, 2017, 11:11 am
  #235  
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Originally Posted by S.R
We now have to wait and see what UA management deems is a better outcome, switching to another seat after all the polaris seat advertising, or taking even longer for the aircraft to get the polaris seats.
The issue for AA was not just delays, but quality control as well. Which also is reported to be a problem with the Polaris seat.

This is not a good situation.
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Old Mar 27, 2017, 6:17 pm
  #236  
 
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As someone who has 3 short flights in these seats, hopefully UA has a way out of this deal.
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Old Mar 27, 2017, 7:27 pm
  #237  
 
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As a mostly Y flyer, I won't be shedding any tears for United over the retrofit delay. Anything that keeps 3-4-3 of as many planes as possible, for as long as possible, is fine by me.

Last edited by coolbeans202; Mar 28, 2017 at 10:47 am Reason: Typo
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Old Mar 27, 2017, 7:46 pm
  #238  
 
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Originally Posted by Kacee
The issue for AA was not just delays, but quality control as well. Which also is reported to be a problem with the Polaris seat.

This is not a good situation.
Kacee, do you mind elaborating on the quality control issues you're referring to? I know some of the trade show pre-production versions had some fit and finish issues, but what are the issues with the final new seats on the planes? I know AA's "Concept D" Zodiac seat had issues with movement of adjascent passengers, which is sort of a big deal. Are there any issues with the current Polaris Zodiac seats that are similar in magnitude? Thanks.
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Old Mar 27, 2017, 9:03 pm
  #239  
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Originally Posted by tuolumne
Kacee, do you mind elaborating on the quality control issues you're referring to?
I recall reading posts that mentioned problems with the seat control - it wouldn't move to different configurations without FA assistance.
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Old Mar 27, 2017, 9:24 pm
  #240  
 
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The more that I think about this, I wonder if what another poster said could be viable:

Sourcing more Diamond seats (the same ones that are currently being produced for the 787's..)

I have absolutely no idea of the per seat cost of doing so, but I would assume these could be delivered rather quickly and could at least be a stopgap measure to get the 77W's flying.
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