Airplane seat concept adjusts to your size, lets airlines nickel-and-dime you to death

morph airline seat concept 1

No sane person will tell you that coach seats on airplanes are fine just they way they are. Cramped, awkward, and unsuited for different body types, these poor excuses for furniture just beg to be upgraded. British design firm Seymourpowell believes it has the answer in a new seating system it calls Morph.

The name is apt, as the seats are designed to, well, morph in all types of ways. Each seat can be narrowed or widened to allow for larger or smaller people to fit comfortably. And, thanks to Morph’s clever taut fabric construction, it rids the world of that annoying moment when the person in front of you reclines his seat by keeping that action within the chair itself. In fact, Morph seats can be adjusted in all types of ways to make them more comfortable for passengers.

Sounds great, right?

Morph-2

We thought so too, until we learned that Morph will essentially allow airlines to bankrupt travelers with even more “upgrade” pricing. As the introduction video (below) explains, Morph allows the “aircraft to be arranged by people’s willingness – and ability to pay – for space.”

Seymourpowell says this feature will have the affect of “blurring the boundaries between the classes” – rather than have a section of rich people and business travelers in their own special section, Morph-equipped aircraft will mix everybody together. Those who pay more will just have a bigger seat.

Considering airlines already charge people “coach deluxe” rates for having a seat in the first 10 rows of the back cabin, or for window or aisle seats, we don’t think it outlandish to believe that these companies will simply use Morph to gouge us even further. Want an extra inch of space? That’ll be $25. Need six inches to fit your giant rear in the chair? Why, that’s only $100 extra – but it’ll feel luxurious. On and on.

Of course, this design could be a godsend for parents traveling with children (who take up less room, thus costing less money for a spot), or for particularly giant humans. But we can’t shake the feeling that average folks will end up losing out on this one.

What do you think – is Morph a better or worse way to fly?

[via The Verge]

Emerging Tech

I mainlined a bag of liquid vitamins — for science

Healthy people are signing up for treatments that are typically saved for patients stuck in hospital beds. Known as nutrient IV therapy, the treatment entails pumping vitamins, minerals, and fluids directly into the bloodstream, bypassing…
Digital Trends Live

Digital Trends Live: Huawei updates, Starlink launch, and Pac-Man’s birthday

On this episode of DT Live, we discuss the ongoing Huawei saga, Amazon’s social games for workers, Ford's partnership with a robotics company, the Starlink satellite launch, Pac-Man’s birthday, and more.
Emerging Tech

Las Vegas officials bet big on Elon Musk’s Boring Company

Elon Musk’s Boring Company has just been awarded a $48.6 million contract by Las Vegas to build a high-speed transportation system beneath the city’s enormous convention center, and it could be ready by early 2020.
Emerging Tech

Airbus shows off the futuristic interior of its autonomous flying taxi

Airbus has given us the first look inside its single-seat flying taxi. The absence of controls in the Vahana electric aircraft is a reflection of its autonomous capabilities, so you can just sit back and enjoy the ride.
Emerging Tech

Future smart clothes promise to keep you the perfect temperature at all times

Regulating your body temperature can sometimes be tough. Engineers from UC San Diego have developed heating and cooling wearable tech which could be embedded into future smart clothing.
Emerging Tech

Japanese spacecraft Hayabusa 2 aborts marker drop mission

The Hayabusa 2 spacecraft's mission to drop a reflective marker on the surface of asteroid Ryugu has been aborted. The Japanese team was considering a second touchdown on the asteroid to collect more materials, but this now seems unlikely.
Emerging Tech

What would it take to build a Matrix-level simulation of reality?

What would it take, technologically speaking, to build a real version of the Matrix? We definitely don't have the technical abilities to do that now, but we're rapidly approaching the point that we will. In this article, MIT computer…
Emerging Tech

Whose name should we etch on the Mars 2020 rover? NASA wants a vote

Dream of making it to Mars? NASA has opened up a new public outreach program to let people send their names to the Red Planet, as an engraving on a silicon chip launched with the Mars 2020 rover.
Emerging Tech

Watch live as SpaceX tries, for the third time, to launch 60 Starlink satellites

SpaceX is having another go at launching the first 60 satellites for its ultra-ambitious Starlink internet constellation. Here's how you can tune in live to watch it all go down today.
Emerging Tech

SpaceX joins internet-from-space race with launch of 60 Starlink satellites

SpaceX has launched a Falcon 9 rocket carrying its first batch of Starlink satellites for its ambitious internet-from-space project. The payload, SpaceX's heaviest to date, successfully deployed an hour after liftoff.
Emerging Tech

The best solar chargers for your phone, tablet, and other battery-powered gear

Looking for a gizmo that can help you charge your phone while on the go? Here, we've outlined the best solar chargers on the market, whether you're looking to charge your phone once, twice, or three times over.
Emerging Tech

This plane-pulling robo-dog makes Boston Dynamics’ Spot look scrawny

A robot dog created by researchers at Italy’s Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia showed off its impressive ability to pull a three-ton airplane down a runway. Check it out in action.
Emerging Tech

Scientists discover unexpected underwater volcano off the coast of Africa

Geologists first noticed something unusual in the Indian Ocean in November last year, when they detected a massive seismic event. Now further research has revealed that the source of the seismic activity is an enormous underwater volcano.
Emerging Tech

Jupiter’s vast magnetic field stretches over time, driven by atmospheric wind

Jupiter has the most powerful magnetic field in our Solar System, 18,000 times as strong as Earth's. Now scientists have discovered that the field changes over time, in an effect called secular variation.