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India: When airports get on the e-way

During your long transatlantic journey, your mobile phone runs out of charge. You rush to the airport’s charging station only to find all ports occupied. How often have you faced this exasperating situation?

Helsinki and Chicago airports are now trialling inductive charging stations, which wirelessly transfer electric charge to a device.

Welcome to the airport of the Future – recognising the passengers increasing need to charge devices during transit, airports are putting in place systems. Not just devices but electric vehicles could be inductively charged as Lufthansa is now experimenting at Frankfurt Airport.

A new report by global travel technology firm Amadeus, called “Reinventing the Airport Ecosystem” has a whole chapter devoted to how technological advances – especially in the mobile apps area – could change the future of air travel.

As the report points out, citing an Ericsson study, in 2011, 85 per cent of the Earth’s population already had mobile coverage and 1 billion had broadband access. Nimble footed companies have been quick to use apps and cloud-based services to be in synch with the digital operating environment of today’s consumers. Similarly, airports and airlines are spotting the opportunity in how they can drive down their fixed asset costs, by making use of the customer’s portable infrastructure, points out the report. To give an example – airlines and airports can easily ‘monetise’ the mobile channel by getting passengers to purchase additional goods and services such as pre-boarding flight upgrades, suggests the report.


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