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air - travel experience- more pleasant – digitalization- communication- in-flight entertainment - Parallel Reality-concept introduction-big move – cabin crew

Will Air Travel Experience Really be More Pleasant Thanks to Digitalization? – By Ahmed Haouaria 

16 Jan 2020

In Today post we’re going to focus on digitalization, which gives airlines real leverage over competitiveness.Digital acts as a catalyst for operational efficiency by providing flexibility to allow rapid adaptation to market changes.Simplified, enriched and more comfortable customer experience, it brings real added value from the purchase of the initial ticket to include a multitude of pre and post flight services.With digitalization, the customer will never fly like before.

"Imagine an airport terminal completely personalized for you," Misapplied Sciences CEO Albert Ng said on the keynote stage at CES 2020. "Instead of a list of 100 flights, you see only your own flight information... All of the signs are in your preferred language, arrows point you to your gate... At the gate, you see the exact time you board, and the news that you got upgraded." Just awesome  … Isn’t it ? 

With the opt-in, parallel reality display that Misapplied Sciences has developed, all passengers from 10 to thousands of people can simultaneously look at the same big screen but see tailored information. There's no need to use special glasses or any kind of augmented reality tools.

Traveling will no more be something that stresses the airlines users but something that brings pleasure. 

Pushing the major airlines forward

Airlines are making their way to CES, the technological meeting held each year in Las Vegas. For this 2020 edition, American Airlines has just announced the launch of a systematic translation service. In the process, it was Delta that played the technological card, by bringing out some major advantages. The CEO of the airline, Ed Bastian, appeared on the main stage of CES to take stock of Delta's progress, and its projects in the more or less long term. The Fly Delta mobile application would thus be destined to become a “digital concierge”, based on a partnership with Lyft, and especially on real-time information concerning traffic or weather, to support the traveler and limit the impact of possible disturbances.

Changing the in-flight entertainmentexperience

The Fly Delta app is also expected to play a crucial in-flight role, coupled with the new entertainment system deployed by Delta. 

Building on the work of its house start-up Delta Flight Products, launched internally in 2016, this new entertainment system could radically change the experience of travelers. They will be able to synchronize their phone with the cabin screen. Then use their loyalty points to order, for example, the delivery of a meal upon arrival at the airport. And for those familiar with video platforms, Delta is updating itself with new features, including a recommendation tool based on previous entertainment choices, and even a “binge button”, to devour the entirety of 'a season in one go, without any moderation ...

"Parallel Reality" concept introduction: the big move

But the most significant technological breakthrough unveiled by delta on the occasion of this CES 2020 undoubtedly concerns the "Parallel Reality" concept. These screens designed by the start-up Misapplied Sciences will appear in mid-2020 at Detroit airport, and could well revolutionize passenger information in a complex airport environment, even for the most experienced travelers. business. Parallel Reality technology is based in particular on a new type of pixel, capable of simultaneously projecting several million light rays of different colors and brightness. Result: a hundred travelers looking at a single screen simultaneously will all have the impression that it is specifically addressed to them, offering them only the information concerning their flight, and in their language ... Delta plans, on the occasion of this experimentation in Detroit, to provide route directions, information on flights, or on the location of lounges. The company also ensures that information on travelers participating in the test is not stored, "privacy" requires. "We are eager to bring this experience to life with Delta," said Albert Ng, CEO of Misapplied Sciences. The on-site team quickly identified the value that the Parallel Reality experience could bring to its customers and had the vision and resources to help bring it to market, ”adds Albert Ng, who already sees the concept of Parallel Reality going beyond the airport: "We will start with Delta customers in Detroit, but technology can eventually be used to create transparent, engaging and personalized experiences in almost any outlet, from stadiums to amusement parks, passing through convention centers and many more."

Delta Air Lines Inc.’s chief executive says he wants to bring “magic” back to air travel. His main promise, free Wi-Fi on all flights, would be magical, based on other airlines’ failures to make it happen. 

Ed Bastian laid out an ambitious plan to digitize the flying experience with machine learning, robotics, free Wi-Fi and texting, big-data analysis, and “binge button” entertainment viewing. 

“As the airline industry enters its second century, we see tech as the tool to continue to innovate,” he said in a morning keynote speech. Bastian said Delta has spent billions of dollars in recent years to turn its technology from a vulnerability to an asset.

Air France case 

Wi-Fi on board widespread at Air France by the end of 2020As part of its Air France Connect program, the company has already equipped 21 of its long-haul aircraft with wi-fi (Boeing 787, Airbus A330 revisited, Boeing 777). Since January 31, 2019, it has been the turn of its medium-haul fleet to be taken care of. By the end of 2020, all Air France aircraft - excluding the regional fleet - will have them. Air France offers all passengers free access to instant messaging such as WhatsApp, iMessage, Viber, WeChat, Messenger through the Pass Message. The Surf Pass, billed from 3 to 18 euros, allows you to send emails, surf the internet. Finally, the Pass Stream, at a cost of 30 euros and only available on long-haul at present, offers greater bandwidth for video streaming or downloading of heavy files."We decided not to block applications that use voice like Skype," said Carole Peytavin, Director of Customer Experience. We believe in travelers' self-regulation. Otherwise, the flight attendants are there to remind you of the rules of decorum. ”The offer is not limited to connectivity. From its portal, Air France offers a selection of films, series and documentaries for free. The music will come later. The company is testing exclusive shopping offers with Skydeals. Air France ensures that it offers a reliable service with guaranteed availability. “During the special flight to the CES in Las Vegas, 80% of travelers connected simultaneously without problems,” says Carole Peytavin. But when approaching some airports, there may be a signal cutoff to comply with local law. "

Air New Zealand experimentation 

Little reminder. Air New Zealand had a pioneering trial in 2017. The Airline  equipped some of its stewards and flight attendants with HoloLens augmented reality helmets. Objective: allow flight crews to immediately obtain the profile of each passenger, their preferences, allergies, choice of meals, for a tailor-made service. The system would even be able to define the level of anxiety of the passengers through visual and audible recognition. Simple communication call or realistic experimentation? Will AI do better than the common sense, fueled by experience, of flight attendants? This remains to be demonstrated.

Air New Zealand said that the Airline has developed a global reputation for innovation having worked with a range of technology partners and introduced a number of customer innovations to enhance the customer experience in recent times. These include auto bag drops to speed up the check-in process with face-to-passport recognition and Airband™, a wristband for children travelling unaccompanied embedded with technology that allows parents and guardians to track each step of their young ones' journey. Airband was named Innovation of the Year at the 2016 CAPA Asia Pacific Aviation Awards.




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