This was an obvious solution to the problem. I am actually surprised it wasn’t rolled out 10 years ago!
Boarding a plane has dramatically changed because of the carry-on crunch. Gate agents wrest bags from passengers in late boarding groups to tag them for checking. Some airlines have baggage tag printers at gates for all the bags that don’t fit in overhead bins. And flights get delayed when too many passengers can’t find room for their bags.
Some passengers feel pressured into paying fees for early boarding just so they won’t be forced to check bags.
Mr. Walton, manager of new features on 737 interiors, thought Boeing had to come up with something dramatically bigger. The Boeing team had started working on the overhead bin problem more than two years ago. Then Alaska became the first customer to actually ask Boeing to find a solution. “Alaska was the real driving force,’’ Mr. Walton says.
In a 60-inch-wide bin, turning the bags on their side means the bin can hold six bags instead of four. Pushing the heavier bin up toward the ceiling to close it takes the same force as Boeing’s current pivot bins because Mr. Walton figured out a way to move the pivot point closer to the center of the bucket. Boeing patented the new pivot system.