Light fantastic: Boeing 787 Dreamliner's digital window tinting

By David Flynn, October 26 2011

Bothersome sliding window shades begone! Boeing’s newly-minted 787 Dreamliner sports ‘digital window tinting’ which makes the glass go dark at the touch of a button.

It’s a first for commercial airliners, but like the 787’s super-sized windows which are almost half as large again as most Boeing and Airbus aircraft, it’s likely to be the shape of things to come.

“We think any future airplane from anybody will have larger (electronic tinting) windows  but the 787 will be the first for many years to come” says Blake Emery, Boeing’s Director of Differentiation Strategy (Emery is the first to admit he has a very ‘unique’ job title).

Passengers can dim the windows by holding down a button in the sidewall.

The transition from fully ‘‘open’ to ‘closed’ takes around one minute, and even the darkest setting still lets some light in. “It’s like being in a limo with tinted windows” Emery explains.

Cabin crew can set the brightness level of all windows, such as ‘opening’ the windows for landing or dimming them during a flight, although passengers still retain a narrow band of control to make the window around 10% brighter without flooding your seatmates with a harsh burst of light.

Also in AusBT's Boeing 787 Dreamliner coverage:


David Flynn

David Flynn is the Editor-in-Chief of Executive Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis.

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