Reducing the inconvenience of a passenger’s journey from kerbside to airside has always been the central challenge for an airport. But airports are discovering a new upside to minimizing annoyances such as check in queues, security screening, gate waiting, lost luggage anxiety and flight delays. They are able to shift a passenger’s time and attention to consuming retail, leisure and other value added options. The result: enhanced passenger experience and improved revenues for airports.
In other words, airports are reconfiguring themselves to become places for customers to “be in” rather than “go through”. In the future, an airport may become a place we choose to go for entertainment, a family dinner, to shop or attend a business meeting -- and not just to take a hurried flight. Certainly, airports have the potential to position themselves as “social hubs” if they can go beyond the idea of a traditional “travel hub”.
Increased revenue through non aero sources is also becoming an important aspect of an airport’s sustenance and success. Enhancing passenger experience and improving operations efficiency in the face of growing traffic and tightening regulations are also equally important goals. Can an airport address all three challenges using technology? At Wipro, we are putting the power of Cognitive Artificial Intelligence, Sentinel Analytics, Blockchain and the Internet of Things (IoT) into the hands of airport operators to create exciting new possibilities for passengers and airport partners such as airlines, concessionaires, security providers, ground handlers and parking specialists who consume their infrastructure.
Airports can create substantial gains for themselves and their stakeholders by leveraging digital technology to create smart and connected airports that:
- Increase ancillary revenue from retail, leisure and other options (with loyalty programs, improved payment options for passengers, bundled deals, airport concierge services, etc.) using passenger information and cognitive computing
- Meet the needs of the millennial generation, their most important target group, through a “single passenger identify” program that personalizes the travel experience
- Improve security and safety using IoT, video and data analytics and AI
- Reduce airport congestion using automation
- Enhance asset utilization, productivity and longevity through predictive analytics and real-time resource management
- Develop sustainability practices by lowering the consumption of energy and water (two costs that are under the radar at most airports) using analytics
Airports today are poised to use digital technologies to enhance passenger experience, lower operating costs, boost non aero revenue and improve safety and sustainability. The technological choices they make today will determine how adaptive and competitive they remain in the future.