United Arab Emirates | November 14, 2017–

SITAONAIR and Emirates have extended their partnership to deliver passenger connectivity solutions across its fleet of A380 and B777 aircraft for a further four years.

The news follows the recent rollout of personalized inflight connectivity for members of the airline’s loyalty program, Emirates Skywards, through SITAONAIR’s onboard Wi-Fi hub, Internet ONAIR. The project was recently awarded the Best Personalization Innovation award at the 2017 APEX EXPO in September.

The extended deal, covering 279 aircraft, underlines Emirates’ continued focus on passenger connectivity excellence by providing harmonized and seamless inflight Internet access to passengers around the globe. The new contract covers Mobile ONAIR and Internet ONAIR on all A380 aircraft, and Internet ONAIR on the B777 fleet.

SITAONAIR’s open platforms approach – launched through its hot topic white paper at last year’s APEX EXPO – delivers a consistent user experience across the various satellite connections and pre-existing onboard technologies present across the Emirates fleet, unconstrained by hardware suppliers’ refresh cycles.

David Lavorel, CEO of SITAONAIR, said: “We are extremely proud to expand the relationship with our long-standing airline customer, Emirates. We have worked closely with Emirates over the years to achieve their connected aircraft vision, and look forward to continually driving cabin connectivity innovation for the benefit of Emirates passengers.”

Emirates is the world’s largest A380 operator, with 100 A380 aircraft in its fleet all equipped with SITAONAIR cabin connectivity.

To find out more about SITAONAIR’s full inflight connectivity portfolio and open platforms vision, visit www.sitaonair.aero, speak to your local SITAONAIR contact, or submit an enquiry form.

November 14, 2017–

International carrier Malindo Air, CAPA 2016 Asia Pacific Regional Airline of the Year, is the latest airline taking strides to digitally transform its cockpit with SITAONAIR.

The partnership will see Malindo Air benefit from SITAONAIR’s position as a leading pilot and flight operations digital transformation specialist and solution integrator, helping enable digitized cockpit operations.

Pilots across Malindo Air’s full fleet of 737s will be equipped with SITAONAIR’s complete Electronic Flight Bag (EFB) solution by the end of 2017, replacing their existing paper-based processes. The addition of the EFB solution will compliment the AIRCOM® FlightPlanner and Datalink Services already equipped across the Malindo Air fleet.

SITAONAIR’s bespoke EFB solution for the airline’s full fleet of 32 aircraft, involves activating the leading iPad-based Aviobook EFB within SITAONAIR’s secure ATI Cloud-hosted ground server, automatically distributing operational data to the pilots’ tablet. To date, all 32 aircraft cockpits are on track to activate the new EFB solution by year end, a timely delivery that will smoothly introduce new ways of working for pilots, particularly in their interactions with dispatchers.

Chandran Rama Muthy, CEO of Malindo Air, says: “Digitizing our work flows and processes to enhance our flight operations is a core part of our airline’s vision. We embraced technology to keep up with our fast growing business. This solution will help our pilots with better efficiency and accuracy. We, and our pilots, are very pleased with how the implementation of EFB by SITAONAIR is taking shape.”

Katrina Korzenowski, Vice President for Asia-Pacific at SITAONAIR, says: “SITAONAIR is proud to support Malindo Air in realizing its ambitions for the digital advancement of the cockpit. Embracing our complete, digitally-integrated EFB solution, supported by the ground-based SITAONAIR AIRCOM® ServerPlatform, means pilots no longer have to grapple with excessive loads of paper documents, binders and forms.”

“Being able to access all the vital information they need for a smooth flight, in digitized formats available at their fingertips, is a real advancement for pilots, enabling them to focus on the flight, confident they have the latest, connected information from a wealth of integrated modules including OFP, Weather and NOTAMs from SITAONAIR’s FlightPlanner System.”

To find out more about SITAONAIR’s connected aircraft solutions portfolio for the cockpit and airline operations, visit www.sitaonair.aero, speak to your local SITAONAIR contact or submit an enquiry form.

Air Senegal becomes the newest airline to use SITA’s Horizon

Kigali | November 13, 2017–Air Senegal SA has become the latest airline in Africa to introduce SITA’s passenger services system (PSS) to manage every aspect of their operation – from reservations and pricing to ticketing and departure control.
The airline is one of a growing number of carriers on the continent that have turned to SITA to provide technology solutions to better manage their passenger operations. Already 15 airlines and ground handlers in Africa use SITA’s Horizon® Passenger Management and Distribution solution while 100 airlines and ground handlers around the globe have used it to board more than 123 million passengers and check in 158 million travelers each year.

Horizon offers the most comprehensive, integrated range of passenger management services available today. Its infrastructure is built on a flexible platform of core systems required by every airline, allowing each carrier to customize the system to meet their specific business requirements and to accommodate future growth.

Air Senegal, the west African country’s new national airline, has turned to SITA to provide a full suite of services – including reservations, ticketing, airfare distribution and departure control – that will support the launch of the airline’s first flights later this year.

Philippe Bohn, CEO of Air Senegal, said: “We have an ambition to establish Air Senegal as a key carrier in West Africa and make our presence felt across the continent. In order to achieve this ambition, it is important that we have a passenger management system that takes care of every aspect of operating the airline and delivers a smooth experience for our passengers every step of the way. SITA is a key partner in providing this technology and we are in the process of implementing this solution ahead of our launch flights later this year.”

Hani El-Assaad, SITA President, Middle East, India & Africa, said: “The air transport industry in Africa is emerging as a major growth market in terms of passenger growth. Our presence and experience on the continent, together with the real business value offered by Horizon, has placed us in an ideal position to support both the continent’s emerging and established airlines, using a passenger management platform that can accommodate airlines of any size, fleet or operating model.”

SITA Lab publishes research findings

London | November 8, 2017– SITA Lab, the research team of the air transport industry’s IT provider SITA, today revealed the learnings from research it carried out with British Airways, Heathrow, Geneva Airport and Miami International Airport into ‘smart contracts’ residing on a blockchain.

Blockchain has been heralded as a transformational technology for many industries. While several use cases have been identified for the air transport industry, the opportunity of using ‘smart contracts’ for shared control of data by airlines and airports is one which promises real benefits. SITA Lab today issued FlightChain, a paper outlining the findings of its research conducted with its airline and airport partners.

The air transport industry is highly-connected and there is a need for ‘single source of truth’ for various data used by different stakeholders. Control of shared data is a key concern for all. Blockchain offers potential to share data in a controlled way. SITA recognizes, however, that there is a need for research so the industry can take the right approach, to ensure governance, standards, compliance, security and more.

This research project was initially established by SITA Lab with Heathrow Airport Holdings Limited (HAL) and International Airlines Group (IAG) with Geneva Airport and Miami International Airport participating. Called FlightChain, it was devised to investigate a single source of truth for flight data.  The “flight data problem” is a well-known issue in the industry – namely, there is no single source of the truth and the data that does exist, is not easily accessed by all parties.

While there are many cases of airlines and airports collaborating to share flight data, this data still resides in separate silos. When there are flight delays, this results in differences between passenger apps, airport FIDS, airline agents. FlightChain ensures all stakeholders have the same information.

Jim Peters, CTO, SITA, said: “Our FlightChain project has demonstrated that blockchain is a viable technology to provide a single source of truth for data for airlines and airports, specifically for real-time flight information. While there are other technologies available for sharing data, the use of blockchain, and smart contracts in particular, provides ‘shared control’ and improves the trustworthiness of the data. This research with our partners shows the potential of blockchain for sharing data across the air transport industry.”

FlightChain was established as a private permissioned blockchain (implemented on both Ethereum and Hyperledger-Fabric) that stores flight information on the blockchain, using a smart contract to arbitrate potentially conflicting data. British Airways, Geneva Airport, Heathrow and Miami International Airport provide flight data that is merged and stored on the blockchain. During this project more than two million flight changes were processed by the smart contract and stored on FlightChain.

Stuart Harwood, Heathrow Automation and Innovation, HAL, said: “Heathrow’s participation in FlightChain with SITA Lab has been very valuable. We are still early in the blockchain technology cycle and more research is required but FlightChain has shown the opportunities for shared control of data with our industry partners.”

Peters, added: “In a real-world network, it will be important to manage the changes to the smart contract as it affects all participants. Industry bodies such as ACI and IATA, working with SITA as the neutral IT provider to the air transport community, could be involved in the establishment of the contract. In fact, we can imagine a future where industry standards are written directly as smart contracts instead of published as PDF documents.”

Glenn Morgan, Head of Digital Business Transformation at International Airlines Group (IAG), said: “Now we’ve proven the technology, we are really excited by the opportunities that blockchain can create in the industry. We will work with IATA and ACI to ensure the best practices are in place.”

The research paper published today details key lessons learned regarding governance, smart contracts, system security and system performance, scalability and reliability. Along with a view on the use of public versus private blockchain networks for the air transport industry.

Download the full Report


Panasonic

Panasonic Avionics Corporation a world leader in Inflight Entertainment and Connectivity (IFEC), and Singapore Airlines, today introduced a series of eight new innovations in personalization with the launch of myKrisWorld – the airline’s newest inflight entertainment offering. Hideo Nakano, Chief Executive Officer for Panasonic Avionics Corp., said, “Panasonic Avionics and Singapore Airlines have always been at the forefront of IFEC innovation.  Whether it’s the shift to in-seat audio/video to video on demand, or the introduction of high-speed connectivity services to passengers, both companies have embraced technologies and services that have defined premium air travel. Today, we are proud to partner with Singapore Airlines to introduce the latest tectonic shift in our industry — personalization.”

Nakano continued, “Last year, we helped Singapore Airlines introduce their award-winning companion app. Today, we’re taking that personalized experience to even greater heights with a series of innovative features that include passenger log-in at their seat; playlist, bookmark, language preference storage and wallpaper customization between flights; customized and personalized entertainment spotlights; popular, trending and recommended content; and exclusive content based on frequent flier tier.”

myKrisWorld embraces Panasonic’s vision for IFEC, which centers around the concept of “the Internet of Me,” taking all of the things that people care about and bringing them together to deliver personalized and contextualized experiences.  Each of these features is made possible by Panasonic’s ability to deliver actionable analytics, where data is used to improve the quality of the passenger experience. With myKrisWorld, the experience starts before passengers board their flight. Passengers can use Singapore Airlines’ app or website to preview content and set up their customized playlist. Once onboard, they can either synchronize their mobile device or log in at their seat to access their pre-selected content.

Crowd-sourced data will offer up alternative titles that are popular. It can ask passengers if they want to finish the movie that they started on the previous flights. It can also make recommendations based on a passenger’s individual habits and what content is trending inflight at that moment in time. Nakano concluded, “What is truly exciting is that we were able to leverage Singapore Airlines’ previous investment in our eX3 system and introduce this new suite of personalized experiences. “By embracing the culture of mobile, we can increase the rate of evolution in the passenger experience, transforming what was once a passive entertainment system into another digital channel that airlines can leverage to better serve their customers.”


SmartSky

In conjunction with the rollout of its 4G LTE-based network, SmartSky Networks recently enabled multiple subject matter experts to experience, firsthand, the unmatched power of its patented inflight connectivity during flights on its Cessna Citation Excel in the skies above Las Vegas. A number of OEMs, MROs, potential partners and Early Bird customers attending the National Business Aviation Association’s Business Aviation Convention and Exhibition (NBAA-BACE) attempted to push the system to its limits, and in the process, learned that SmartSky 4G LTE is the only system capable of delivering multi-Gigabyte per hour data rates inflight, bi-directionally and with low latency, effectively redefining what it means to be able to stream, chat and text in real-time onboard a business jet. A comprehensive analysis of the data operations during the demonstration flights confirmed SmartSky 4G LTE’s unrivaled speed and capacity. Over three days, passengers on 12 flights experienced:

•    Multi-GB per hour actual data throughput consistently on each flight.

•    Actual peak speeds well in excess of 10 Mbps, with individually run speed tests showing high multi-Mbps bidirectional data rates, as well.

•    Average return link traffic representing nearly 25 percent of the data, with one flight pushing 46 percent of its data off the plane. No other inflight connectivity network supports these crucially needed ratios to run the popular applications customers expect to use. Without SmartSky 4G LTE’s return link and low latency, customers are limited to the few applications other networks support.

•    Average of more than 50 seamless beam handovers per flight, proving the most difficult engineering aspect of the system works, and demonstrating the system’s inherent scalability.

SmartSky demonstrated capabilities previously difficult or impossible to consistently achieve on either the incumbent’s ATG network or new satellite systems, such as conducting a live WebEx, or quickly sending large PowerPoint files, all while other onboard passengers were doing multiple streaming sessions. The innovative beamforming power of the network enables bi-directional live communications, at speeds that match Wi-Fi on the ground.

SmartSky’s 4G LTE nationwide network deployment involves many steps on the way to a transformative air-to-ground connectivity solution, including secure datacenters strategically located in California, Colorado and Virginia that are already operational. SmartSky is currently in manufacturing with its proprietary antennas and ground stations, deploying them nationwide on existing cell towers as the equipment rolls off the production lines. The company estimates initial nationwide coverage will be available in mid-2018, with Satcom Direct (SD) serving as its exclusive business aviation service provider.


Thales

Thales has supported an aviation cybersecurity effort with the Atlantic Council and here is what Alan Pellegrini note about the free report: “The launch of this report by the Atlantic Council marks an important step in creating awareness because it will help drive needed public dialogue on cybersecurity in aviation. Starting this dialogue to strengthen the community’s resilience in the face of new cyber realities is the reason Thales chose to underwrite this report which promises to create a foundation for how the community can come together to protect the traveling public. Anticipating, identifying, and mitigating cyberspace vulnerabilities in the aviation community is a significant challenge and one that must be confronted by every stakeholder—not just the largest or most visible.” ‎


digEcor

IFExpress got this news release in from digEcor: digEcor is very pleased to announce the appointment of Paul Margis as Non-Executive Chairman of digEcor’s Board of Directors. Paul is an industry heavyweight with a track record of spearheading the Airline Inflight Entertainment and Communications Industry. With over 30 years’ experience in the aviation industry including 15 patents relating to innovation across Inflight Entertainment hardware, software, communications and telecommunications pertaining to the commercial aircraft environment and other vehicles. This follows the recent appointment of Richard Denny as a Director in October. Mr. Margis’ career began at Hughes Aircraft and he subsequently joined Matsushita Avionics (now Panasonic Avionics Corporation) in 1992. He quickly rose to the top of Panasonic Avionics Corporation’s executive team in various roles, including: Field Applications Engineer, Director, General Manager and eventually, Vice President of Advanced Systems Engineering where he led the development of AVOD and the popular X Series systems. In 2000, Mr. Margis was promoted to Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer and in 2005, he took the helm as President and CEO. David Withers, Chief Executive comments “We are very excited to have Paul join digEcor. He is one of the founders of our industry and his experience and vision will be invaluable to us as we grow” Margis commented “I am excited and honored to be a part of digEcor. I look forward to working with David and the team as they develop innovative products to create a brilliant Passenger experience”. Editors Note: Richard Denny, communications guru has also joined the digEcor board – See the press release here.


Lufthansa Systems

Cockpit Innovation, the high-tech investment arm of EL AL Israel Airlines, and Lufthansa Systems announced the formation of a unique strategic partnership in the realm of aviation and travel entrepreneurship. Under the new partnership, Lufthansa Systems will support with identifying and cultivating breakthrough startup technologies. Furthermore the company will play a major role in the process of locating and selecting startups to cooperate with Cockpit, by sending experts from the company to work with the startups on relevant developments.

Lufthansa Systems’ goal is to partner with promising startups in the aviation and travel industry through the Cockpit Fund activities and then connect the entrepreneurs and their innovative technologies with the industry’s leading airlines. Cockpit has invested so far in seven companies from a variety of fields such as AI, Big Data, communications and fintech (financial technology) that create new, high-quality value for customers and enhance the efficiency of airlines and other sectors in the industry. Among the portfolio are 30secondstofly, Routier and Bidflyer.  Cockpit is the first industry venture fund with the mission to seek out, support and invest in entrepreneurs with disruptive technologies in digital travel, aviation and aerospace. As a global player, Cockpit Innovation serves as a bridge between the startup community and leading players of the air-travel industry, all over the world. As part of the EL AL Group, Cockpit is committed to ventures re-inventing air travel through innovation. By creating unique international channels for entrepreneurs, Cockpit startups get a first class opportunity to pilot ideas, and a chance to introduce products to Cockpit’s stakeholders and partners around the world. Cockpit’s portfolio companies receive a real opportunity for a first enterprise client, resources and strong international network, supporting startups all the way toward global deployment of their innovative ventures.


IMMFLY

As a setup, please note that Immfly is an inflight entertainment and services platform that passengers can access on board via their PEDs. The service enhances the onboard digital experience through a wireless network and offers airlines the fastest and most efficient content syncro in Europe  – there, that was not difficult! They say in their latest new release: Immfly welcomes major brands such as Rakuten, U-talk, American Express, Mondelez and Vodafone to sponsor its In-flight Entertainment System (IFE) onboard. The digital platform enables passengers to use their own devices (phones, tablets and PCS) to access entertainment, travel guides and to book activities while flying. The campaigns can be either online or offline, thereby ranging from channel sponsorship, branded content, to more sophisticated branding actions such as sampling or onboard events. IFE Wireless Solutions are flourishing, and so is Immfly’s advertising inventory.

Immfly, already a leading provider of in-flight sales and communications services in Europe,expects to reach 200 million connected passengers by 2019 following its partnerships with airlines which include carriers such as Iberia Express, Volotea, XL Airways and now easyJet.

They note: The leading European low-cost airline has chosen Immfly as a strategic partner to launch their new innovative wireless in-flight entertainment service, “Air Time”. This is a unique opportunity for brands to exhibit its value and promote themselves with Immfly at 30.000 feet.Here is more: Immfly’s digital platform is present in 114 destinations, with 370.000 annual routes, and currently, reach 11 million passengers.

Lufthansa Systems will participate in activities of Cockpit Innovation’s investment fund

Raunheim/Tel Aviv | November 7, 2017–
Cockpit Innovation, the high-tech investment arm of EL AL Israel Airlines, and Lufthansa Systems announced the formation of a unique strategic partnership in the realm of aviation and travel entrepreneurship. Under the new partnership, Lufthansa Systems will support with identifying and cultivating breakthrough startup technologies. Furthermore the company will play a major role in the process of locating and selecting startups to cooperate with Cockpit, by sending experts from the company to work with the startups on relevant developments.

Lufthansa Systems’ goal is to partner with promising startups in the aviation and travel industry through the Cockpit Fund activities and then connect the entrepreneurs and their innovative technologies with the industry’s leading airlines. Cockpit has invested so far in seven companies from a variety of fields such as AI, Big Data, communications and fintech (financial technology) that create new, high-quality value for customers and enhance the efficiency of airlines and other sectors in the industry. Among the portfolio are 30secondstofly, Routier and Bidflyer.

In addition, Cockpit recently became a key investor in the second fundraising round of AeroCRS, in which the startup raised more than NIS 1 million. AeroCRS developed a platform based on an advanced SaaS (Software as a Service) model that enables airlines to set up and manage their entire digital operations, distribution and sales system within a short time – sometimes within few days. AeroCRS currently serves more than 50 airlines around the world.

Henry Chen Weinstein, CEO at Cockpit, says: “The right partnerships have proved themselves as innovation catalysts. We are constantly working to expand Cockpit’s global ecosystem. The connection between Cockpit and a leader in the worldwide industry such as Lufthansa Systems is undoubtedly a major achievement on the path toward the ability to invest in and support startups that focus on additional sectors in the industry on a global scale.”

Stefan Auerbach, CEO at Lufthansa Systems, added: “We are delighted being part of this unique digital travel and aviation collaboration for entrepreneurs. The core of our company strategy is to put airlines in a perfect position for the digital future. Together, we will become true sources of potential and inspiration for innovative ideas”

France | November 1, 2017–An evolving multi-link ACARS landscape, embracing cutting-edge cockpit connectivity and solid VHF foundations, will remain the backbone of the aviation industry for the foreseeable future. So saysSITAONAIR, global leader in aviation operational and ATC communications, in its latest white paper, ACARS: Timeless tech for the connected aircraft age.

With a staggering 7.2 billion passengers expected to take to the skies in 2035, according to IATA projections, SITAONAIR’s latest report argues that driving the evolution and diversification of its ACARS technologies is key to empowering the industry to negotiate an increasingly crowded airspace.

SITAONAIR recently announced major partnerships with Inmarsat and Teledyne Controls that illustrate the adaptability of ACARS capabilities for emerging technologies, reflecting and supporting the diverse global aviation community in the connected aircraft age.

SITAONAIR has added Inmarsat’s SwiftBroadband-Safety (SB-S) to its portfolio; an ACARS-reliant next-generation flight deck communications platform giving airlines a dedicated IP connectivity service supporting enhanced safety and operational efficiency.

Working with Teledyne Controls, SITAONAIR is delivering the aviation industry’s first-ever airline-integrated ACARS datalink terrestrial cellular 3G/4G service. Employing Teledyne Controls’ GroundLink® Comm+ system, SITAONAIR is able to integrate terrestrial cellular services into its core datalink network, giving airlines the flexibility and benefit of another transmission channel for aircraft communications.

Meanwhile, VHF, VDL and legacy networks continue to be adopted, advanced, and work alongside these alternate technologies, around the world. Among these significant programs, detailed in the white paper, SITAONAIR has upgraded Europe’s primary ATC-airline communications network, delivering Europe’s first Multi-Frequency (MF) Very High Frequency Digital Link mode 2 (VDLm2) infrastructure. In March 2017 the Czech Republic’s Air Navigation Service Provider, ANS CR, appointed SITAONAIR to deliver a “communication gateway” to Prague Airport and others – through its ACARS network.

The company’s VHF/VDL network has also established an important new aircraft communications infrastructure in developing parts of the world, with more than 50 sites established in Brazil prior to the Rio Olympic Games.

Evolving ACARS landscape

Paul Gibson, Portfolio Director, AIRCOM at SITAONAIR, explains: “SITAONAIR’s ACARS network continues to evolve from its VHF origins, embracing satellite services, VHF and higher-speed VHF Digital Link (VDL), to deal with the steady rise in air traffic.

“Our recent announcement with Inmarsat on our adoption of SwiftBroadband-Safety to our wide-ranging connected aircraft portfolio will prove critical. We’re excited about the potential SB-S will bring to enable us to further innovate new, and enhance our existing, services and solutions, around a dedicated, secure IP connection to the cockpit.

“SITAONAIR is taking strides to ensure the ACARS network is evolving in tandem with the digital age, to enable message transmission using alternate technologies. Traditional ACARS and ACARS over IP will have a mutually important role to play in the ground-to-air connectivity landscape. Whether supporting the transmission of millions of ACARS messages exchanged every day, advancing Brazil’s complete VHF and VDL datalink network ahead of the Rio Olympics, or launching a next-generation flight deck IP communications platform, SITAONAIR is and will remain central to our industry’s ACARS story.”

ACARS remains heavily integrated into the ground systems of most airlines. Huge volumes of vital aircraft data come to and from aircraft via ACARS messaging, with 220 airlines now relying on SITAONAIR’s multi-link ACARS technology. The white paper highlights why ACARS, in its diversity, remains the most reliable, efficient and cost-effective ground-to-air messaging system, with SITAONAIR as its core service provider.

To find out more, download the full white paper, ACARS: Timeless tech for the connected aircraft age.

To explore the SITAONAIR connected aircraft portfolio, visit www.sitaonair.aero, speak to your local SITAONAIR contact orsubmit an enquiry form online.

SITA will deliver the most advanced airport experience when the world’s largest airport opens in 2018

Istanbul | November 1, 2018–Istanbul New Airport, one of the world’s most ambitious airport projects, has appointed global IT provider SITA to bring the region’s most advanced airport to life. SITA will deliver a wide range of airport, passenger and baggage processing solutions to deliver a world-class experience, showcasing the future of air travel.

İGA, the contractor and designated operator of the new airport, has brought SITA on board to design and deliver IT solutions that will manage everything from landing to take off as well as all passenger processing and baggage management systems from check-in through to boarding. SITA’s systems will be required to support 75 flight departures per hour, 3,500 flight operations per day and 1,000 bags per flight. Upon completion of all phases of the project, the capacity will reach over 200 million passengers annually, making it one of the world’s biggest airports.

Hani El-Assaad, SITA President, Middle East, India and Africa said: “Airports are without a doubt one of the most connected public spaces. SITA’s role is to provide and integrate all these systems to provide effortless airport management while elevating the passenger experience and satisfaction. We remove the complexity so that İGA can focus on what is really important: the passenger.”

In the first phase of the infrastructure development, SITA will deploy passenger processing systems to provide a smooth and efficient experience for passengers. This includes SITA’s departure control system and common-use platform, allowing multiple airlines to connect and use the same check-in and boarding infrastructure. SITA will also implement automated passenger access control that will validate all types of boarding passes against travel documents at key touchpoints such as security and boarding. In total, SITA will provide 1,041 check-in and boarding workstations and 90 touchpoints where passengers can validate their boarding passes.

SITA’s state of the art baggage management technology will also ensure airlines flying to the airport are able to track their bags at every stage of the journey, meeting IATA’s Resolution 753 requirements from day one.

In parallel, SITA will deploy key airport management solutions that will allow İGA to proactively manage and oversee every aspect of the airport operation. SITA’s Airport Management Solution will make it possible for İGA to centralize flight data information collected from all the systems in the airport and to proactively take smart decisions in managing the resources in the airport. SITA will help İGA take collaboration a step further through the sharing of common airport operational objectives across stakeholders such as airlines, ground handlers and control authorities.

Yusuf Akçayoğlu, CEO of İGA Airports Construction said: “We fully understand that having the right technology will be essential to the successful operation of the new airport and future-proofing it for decades to come.

It is also critical to ensuring our passengers fully benefit from our new, world-class facilities by providing innovative systems that make the journey through the airport enjoyable and effortless. We are confident that we will conclude this co-operation successfully.”

Ersin İnankul, CIO of İGA Airports Construction said: “In building a new facility, we have the opportunity to implement technology or the capacity to accommodate new technologies, thereby ensuring we are well prepared to accommodate changing requirements over time. Working with SITA, we have implemented passenger and operational systems that support those evolving demands, assuring the long-term future of Istanbul New Airport.”

Read the interview with Ersin İnankul, CIO of İGA Airports Construction in SITA’s Air Transport IT Review online

The construction of the new airport will be carried out in four phases. The first phase will be finalized in 2018 with the opening of three runways and a main terminal building with a capacity of 90 million passengers a year. Close to 100 airlines have committed to begin using the airport once it opens for operations.

VT Miltope

One thing IFEC shows are really good for – surprises, especially in technology. Case in point, the recent APEX EXPO in Long Beach. The surprise was router security and the folks at VT Miltope certainly caught us unaware – they were well along in the developmental relationship with a cybersecurity expert (RazorSecure) and have a clear view of the issues with hacking and the potential types of attacks that routers might face on flights that provide inflight internet connectivity. While IFExpress has been following the deluge of attacks on the ground, we have been watching Wi-Fi capable planes for over a year now and it is a  fact that the folks who make routers for IFEC are too. In fact, cybersecurity is becoming a “big deal” for aviation. As proof of this conjecture, check out this Cybersat17 Conference coming in November – Cyber Sat Summit, but this year is just a beginning of a bigger focus on cabin data technology and cabin hacking security efforts.

Getting back to the APEX show, the IFExpress graphic rectangle is a portion of an actual page from VT Miltope’s “Cabin Wireless Network: The Next Frontier” presentation and it opened our eyes! The VT Miltope team has been on track with understanding and protecting IFEC wireless hacking issues and is in the process of working with a partner – RazorSecure Software who will assist in the development of more cabin hacking issues.

As a quick visit recap, we took the opportunity during the expo to receive an overview of VT Miltope’s planned MAP3, with the following key enhancements over the nMAP2, 802.11ac WAVE 2, Enhanced CHT, Embedded Server Storage (2 TB) (Optional), RazorSecure Software (Optional). We should also mention that we have a link for the preliminary data sheet for the MAP3 product with future product details which should be available this year. It should be noted that the proposed product will be a takeoff from the successful nMAP2 and by adding WAVE 2 (IEEE 802.11ac hardware and software for upgrading speed and data throughput), CHT (Enhanced Cognitive Hotspot Technology (Optimizing wireless cabin wireless data communication), optional  2 TB of Data Storage, and RazorSecure (Optional) advanced cyber security intrusion detection – protecting data communications). We won’t go into all the new features but from a technology point if view, this router is going to be a big deal! Add the security additions from RazorSecure, and this will be a formable product! It’s security developments will protect against DOS Attacks, Physical Attacks, Remote Shell Access, Critical Configuration Changes, Authentication and Misconfiguration Issues – and more than we can cover here. Here is a link to some of the Wi-Fi security issues facing connectivity –  US Warns Of Security Flaw Which Can Compromise Wi-Fi Connections (Update)  Here is our message: If you have wireless cabin data communication hacking concerns, you had better call VT Miltope! (We should mention the Galgus team as another contributor to the included technology of the VT Miltope product!)


Gogo

Gogo has made Fortune’s “Future 50” list of companies best positioned for strong future growth. Fortune worked together with the Boston Consulting Group to create the list. To identify the Future 50, Boston Consulting Group examined 2,300 publicly traded U.S. companies and reviewed 15 years of financial results through year-end 2016. They divided the companies into two different groups—those above $20 billion in market value at the time of the screening and those below.

“We are very proud to have been selected to the inaugural Future 50 list as it validates our leadership and innovation as the Inflight Internet company,” said Michael Small, Gogo’s president and CEO.  “We are connecting aircraft and leveraging that connectivity to develop cutting edge products and services that engage passengers and help our aviation partners run a safer and more efficient operation. Our latest technology innovations like 2Ku have us well positioned to fuel future growth.”

Gogo announced that it has been selected by LATAM Airlines Brazil to introduce inflight connectivity using Gogo’s 2Ku technology to 100 of its A320 aircraft, which operate flights in Brazil as well as to other countries in Latin America. Gogo’s inflight connectivity service will begin in the first half of 2018 and the roll-out of the technology is expected to be completed in the first half of 2019. “We have selected the most modern and innovative in-flight internet technology available in order to offer an unrivaled and diverse onboard experience to our passengers in Brazil.  The new service will complement LATAM Entertainment, our wireless entertainment system, and will provide our passengers with the freedom to choose how they want to enjoy their journeys,” said Jerome Cadier, CEO of LATAM Airlines Brazil.

Gogo’s 2Ku technology is installed on more than 350 aircraft today and delivers proven performance of more than 15 Mbps to each passenger device, covering more than 98 percent of all flight hours around the world with 98 percent system availability. With an open architecture that leverages current and future Ku satellites, 2Ku offers unrivaled adaptability to keep airlines connected now and in the future. The equipment installed on LATAM’s aircraft will include Gogo’s new, performance boosting modem. The proprietary features of the new modem significantly increase throughput and reliability to and from the aircraft.


BOEING

Boeing just signed a big deal with Singapore Airlines for 20 777-9s and 19 787-10s and 6 options of each…in the Oval Office. The deal is worth $13.8 B at list prices.

SIA, Boeing firm 777-9, 787-10 order at White House ceremony | Airframes content from ATWOnline

Also, it looks like the all Airbus Hong Kong Airlines is seeking to speed up growth to take on Cathay Pacific and will most likely get some Boeing 787’s. Last week, Reuters also predicted China Southern would buy 38 more Boeing planes worth $5.6 Billion at retail prices.

The company is investigating plans to double the B767 Everett production and apparently have an order which depends on a certain production rate of the planes. And, we understand that Boeing is looking at passenger version of the aircraft. The company has declined comment on the the airline but United Continental has been mentioned in the press. They have 51 B767’s that are quite old and some 77 B757’s that are around 20 years old.

On another front, There have also been rumors of a sale of 100 Boeing 767 freighters to Amazon’s growing Prime Air cargo fleet.


AIRBUS

The first A330neo took off August 19 at Blagnac in Toulouse, France at 09.57 hrs local time, for its maiden flight taking place over south-western France. The aircraft, MSN1795, is a A330-900 and the first of three certification flight-test aircraft to fly, powered by the latest technology Rolls-Royce Trent 7000 turbofans. The A330neo’s certification development program itself will last around 1,400 flight-test hours. This will comprise 1,100 flight hours for the A330-900 campaign – to achieve its respective EASA and FAA Type Certification around the middle of 2018; plus 300 flight hours for A330-800 version – which will be certified in 2019. Overall, the full A330neo Family flight-test campaign will be performed by three certification flight-test aircraft, plus the first production aircraft (the latter to validate the Airspace cabin prior to EIS).

Launched in July 2014, the latest generation of Airbus’ widebody family, the A330neo builds on the A330’s proven economics, versatility and reliability while reducing fuel consumption by a further 14 per cent per seat. The NEO’s two versions – the A330-800 and A330-900 – will accommodate 257 and 287 passengers respectively in a three-class seating layout, are powered by the latest-generation Rolls-Royce Trent 7000 engines, accommodate up to 10 more seats, offer new “Airspace” cabin amenities, and feature a new larger span wing with Sharklet wingtip devices.


SITA

The air transport industry has cybersecurity as a top priority with 95% of airlines and 96% of airports investing resources into major cybersecurity programs or pilots over the next three years. Yet research released  from global IT provider SITA shows there is still room for improvement with only one third of boards at airlines, and a fifth at airports, having fully integrated cybersecurity into their business plans.

Speaking today at a gathering of European air transport industry leaders, Barbara Dalibard, CEO of SITA, highlighted that while cybersecurity is the number one priority for almost all airlines and airports, it demands more attention and must be higher on industry board agendas.

Dalibard said: “Recent global cyber attacks demonstrate the risks and the need for a proactive approach. The air transport industry is highly connected and reliant on partners. We must work as a community to fight the global threat to cybersecurity. While we are pleased to see a 46% increase in the number of airlines prepared to deal with major cyber threats over the past year, there is still more to be done. The industry should move from dealing with common cyber threats to being prepared for major ones. As the technology provider owned by industry members, SITA is committed to invest in, and lead, the community effort to maximize cybersecurity. Together we can ramp up the industry’s defenses and ensure we remain one step ahead of any threat.”

SITA has conducted in depth research into the level of cybersecurity maturity at airlines and airports in the fight against this global threat. The results show that there are very high levels of security awareness among staff at airlines (82%) and airports (85%). This year, beyond cybersecurity protection, the industry is focusing on threat detection and response management. Already CIOs at 69% of airlines and 47% of airports are implementing security events and correlation monitoring, while security incident response management is being put in place at 77% of airlines and 60% airports.

Dalibard added: “Airlines and airports are building their critical defenses and preparing to deal with common threats but we must all bring it to the highest level and integrate cybersecurity at executive and board level. Together we must identify, detect and react to cyber threats and protect the industry’s assets from attack.”

Having identified the challenge, SITA earlier this year partnered with Airbus to address the air transport industry’s distinct concerns and created a unique CyberSecurity Aviation Security Operations Center (SOC). It acts like a cyber control tower with an integrated combination of processes, people and technology to detect, analyze, respond to, and report on cybersecurity incidents.

Markus Braendle, Head, Airbus Cybersecurity, said: “The air transport industry has unique cybersecurity challenges because of the varied and increasing use of smart end points across a largely distributed infrastructure. Digital transformation is enabling the air transport industry to deliver better services to its customers, but raising its threat exposure. Together SITA and Airbus CyberSecurity bring expertise and solutions to help airlines and airports monitor their digital assets to detect and respond to incidents.”

The SOC is part of a broader portfolio of SITA products and services that help airlines and airports identify threats and protect against, detect and respond to cyber attacks.

SITA also operates the Community Cyber Threat Center, a security information sharing service run on behalf of SITA’s more than 400 air transport industry members. It enables actionable information on cyber threats to be shared in a timely manner among key industry stakeholders.

These initiatives are part of SITA’s commitment to lead the air transport community fight against cyber threats and to improve the integration of cybersecurity into business plans at board level at airlines and airports.

SITA’s 2017 Air Transport IT Trends Insights are available here. Over the coming months, further insight into the results will be made available.


INMARSAT

Inmarsat is pleased to announce it has recently joined the Aviation Information Sharing and Analysis Center (A-ISAC), the trusted international membership association for sharing cybersecurity information targeted at the aviation sector. As part of the A-ISAC, Inmarsat joins a global contingent of aviation industry companies working collaboratively to develop and share timely and actionable information related to best practices, protective measures, threats and vulnerabilities. A-ISAC members are located on five continents and are leaders in the airline, airport, platform, satellite, and equipment manufacturing segments of the industry.


SECURITY

The US government is getting very concerned about the potential misidentification of bad devices in laptops and US passengers and planes might come under a security ban for the larger devices in the aircraft baggage holds…and in some cases, in the cabin. The US FAA is suggesting a worldwide ban on laptops in checked bags for obvious reasons. The issue in the checked bags is related to lithium-ion batteries and related potential issues with fire and explosions. There is also concern that nothing larger than an iPhone will be permitted in the cabin. If the cabin becomes out of bounds for laptops, you had better get a reliable source of small, secure data storage and a lot of carry-on print matter. Perhaps iPads that have more capability will become common, but we think they have a way to go to get laptop-like usage. We will see!

That laptop ban could be about to get a whole lot worse for plane passengers


MORE STUFF

  • In case you didn’t know, FTE Asia is Nov.7- 8, 2017 in Singapore and the folks at IFPL will be there as well. They told IFExpress: “We will be showcasing their latest USB-A and USB-C power solutions and how they are delivering seamless seat integration to truly enhance the ergonomics and aesthetics of the seat. Further, in line with passenger demand for consumer technology on-board, IFPL will be demonstrating their latest range of USB-A and USB-C outlets, AC power outlets, inductive charge and their traditional audio jackpassenger control units and seat back payment terminal solutions. We invite you to visit stand A33.”
  • Lastly, we have a freebie for you! While looking for a recap of the the Delta-CS100-Boeing-Airbus story, we came across Jason Cottrell’s excellent weekly airline publication (Airline Weekly) and his Fleet Sheet story on page 3 is a great summary. We asked for Jason’s permission to share it with you, so here it is:‎ airlineweekly.com/102317.pdf We also suggest you consider a subscription if you are airline data oriented. You can find out how by contacting him at jcottrell@airlineweekly.com – a really great airline publication.

Using the new mobile service, agents can trace and rebook bags faster and on the spot

Euro Air Transport IT Summit, Hamburg | October 17, 2017–Airport operator Fraport has significantly speeded up the repatriation of delayed or mishandled bags to passengers at Frankfurt Airport, with the introduction of SITA’s WorldTracer® Tablet.

WorldTracer® Tablet provides a fast, mobile way to trace and return mishandled bags at arrivals and during period of disruption. Agents can roam the baggage hall, capturing details of missing bags in front of the passenger, delivering a better passenger experience and avoiding queues at traditional baggage desks.  Passengers are provided with a printed receipt from mobile printers or sent electronically to SMS or email addresses, on the spot. Agents can also log and print new “rush” bag tags and quickly get mishandled bags onto flights to their intended destination during periods of disruption, eliminating potential delays.

The service is an extension of SITA’s WorldTracer®, a global reporting and matching service of found bags to passenger lost bag reports used by more than 460 airlines and ground handlers in more than 2,800 airports globally.

Anke Giesen, Executive Director Operations at Fraport, said: “Losing one’s bag while traveling is never a pleasant experience and one we at Fraport have worked hard to avoid. However, in those rare situations where bags are delayed or mishandled, it is important that we find and return the bag as quickly as possible. WorldTracer® Tablet allows our agents to respond faster and in a proactive manner. That is having a profound impact on customer satisfaction.”

Sergio Colella, SITA President for Europe, said: “Technology has played an instrumental role in halving the number of mishandled bags over the past 10 years. Yet there are still occasions where bags are delayed due to weather or other disruptions. This is where WorldTracer® Tablet can add tremendous value in making sure that passengers are quickly and effectively reunited with their bags.”

WorldTracer® Tablet’s intuitive interface runs on top of the WorldTracer® Management Module. The service uses standard iPad tablets, which are connected to handheld scanners and Bluetooth printers for faster passenger processing.

Kotoka International Airport’s Terminal 3 to cement airport’s position as a major regional hub

Johannesburg | October 16, 2017– SITA is providing its world-class passenger and baggage processing technology as well as its airport management solutions to Ghana’s new Terminal 3 at Kotoka International Airport in Accra, helping cement the airport’s position as a vital regional hub.

Ghana’s largest airport is expanding its capacity to meet significant growth in international passenger traffic, increasing the airport’s capacity to five-million passengers a year. The country’s aviation industry has witnessed significant growth over the past decade due to the discovery of petroleum and gas reserves, sustained domestic demand and the growth of the tourism sector.

SITA, the global air transport IT provider, has worked closely with both MAPA, the construction company building the new terminal, and Ghana Airports Company Limited (GACL), the airport operator, to ensure that the new terminal has the most up-to-date technology to support the country’s modern airport infrastructure.

SITA already provides technology for Terminals 1 and 2 at Kotoka International Airport and will ensure that its world-class technology is fully integrated with the existing terminals from day one. This will deliver smooth passenger and baggage processing, and efficient operations across the entire airport.

SITA is deploying its latest passenger processing technology including common use check-in desks and self-service check-in kiosks, allowing the airport to maximize its capacity by enabling airlines to cost-effectively share the same infrastructure. The airport will also make use of SITA’s state of the art baggage management technology that will assist airlines in tracking bags every step of the way, helping them meet IATA’s Resolution 753 requirements from day one.

On the operational side, SITA’s Airport Management Solution will simplify planning and operational control, and facilitate collaborative decision-making, data management and analysis in Terminal 3 and across the entire airport. It will also support revenue management with its billing and reporting functionality.

Levent Uzunokur, General Manager of MNG Technical, MAPA’s parent company, said: “SITA was the obvious choice both because of its wide experience of airport technology across the world and the team’s specific knowledge of Kotoka International Airport. SITA’s ability to seamlessly integrate the new terminal into the existing airport operations is particularly important and will have a very positive impact on the success of the whole project.”

Dr Gershon Adzadi, Head of ICT at Ghana Airports Company Limited, said: “SITA has long provided its technology and know-how at Kotoka International Airport. Their understanding of our business and their leading technology solutions at airports make them an ideal partner to support us in the next chapter of our airport’s growth.”

SITA is initially contracted to MAPA during the deployment and implementation phase before handing over to GACL who will then take over the day-to-day running of the terminal.

Hani El-Assaad, SITA President, Middle East, India & Africa, said: “We are working with MAPA to transform the new facility into a working airport terminal that can process 1,250 passengers an hour. Kotoka International Airport’s new terminal will have the world-class technology it needs to support the airport’s role as a leading hub in the region.”

Kotoka International Airport supports both international and national routes for passenger and cargo aircraft. When Terminal 3 opens at the end of 2017, it will have six contact stands and two remote stands for long-range aircraft, including Airbus A380s, A330s and Boeing 777s and 787s.

October 9, 2017–Avianca Brasil (OceanAir) is “proud” to have activated industry best-practice flight-tracking with SITAONAIR, as the airline prepares to expand its operations.

SITAONAIR’s AIRCOM® FlightTracker is now airline-operational on the domestic carrier’s current fleet of 49 A320 and four A330 aircraft. This puts Avianca Brazil well ahead of the International Civil Aviation Organization’s (ICAO) 2018 safety mandate, compelling operators to state their aircraft flight positions at least once every 15 minutes.

The airline has also deployed SITAONAIR’s AIRCOM® FlightMessenger on its fleet, helping improve efficiency by translating operational data into a format that seamlessly integrates into the airline’s IT infrastructure.

Frederico Pedreira, Chief Executive Officer of Avianca Brasil, said: “Deploying this industry benchmark flight-tracker has been a priority for us, and we are very happy with the results. Having the proper technology from SITAONAIR to track our fleet, comply with the ICAO’s recommendation, and further our commitment to passenger safety, is an achievement we are proud of.

“As we begin the exciting path to expanding beyond domestic routes to offer international flights across the Americas, we do so equipped with an impressive technology that will seamlessly support the management of our growing airborne fleet.”

Carlos Vianna, SITAONAIR’s Head of Business Development, Latin America, said: “Avianca Brasil joins a select group of airlines in South America today to have activated flight-tracking technologies, reinforcing their passenger safety commitments.

“SITAONAIR’s AIRCOM® FlightTracker comes straight from aviation’s digital experts, providing automated alerting and gathering data from multiple global sources, filling in any gaps between air navigation services provider tracking. Our FlightTracker will ensure that Avianca Brasil has the intelligent innovation it needs to effortlessly support the comprehensive management of the fleet as the airline continues to expand.”

Discover SITAONAIR’s FlightTracker online at www.sitaonair.aero, speak to your local SITAONAIR contact, or submit an enquiry form online.

SITA technology will allow airlines at one of the world’s biggest airports to track bags at every step

Istanbul | October 9, 2017– İGA, contractor and designated operator of Istanbul New Airport, has appointed SITA to implement its innovative baggage tracking solution at what will be one of the world’s largest airports, allowing airlines to meet IATA Resolution 753’s baggage tracking requirements from day one.

The airport, due to open in 2018, will have capacity to accommodate 90 million passengers a year. Upon completion of all four phases, the passenger capacity will reach over 200 million passengers annually and will be required to track more than 75,000 bags an hour. The potential for bags to be mishandled in such a busy environment will be significantly reduced with SITA’s baggage solution by providing information on where every single bag is on its route through the airport.

SITA’s baggage solution provides the IT infrastructure that makes it possible for airlines to track bags at key points in the journey, including check-in, transfer and arrival. Airlines will also be able to receive updates on where their baggage is at each step of the journey, allowing them to comply with IATA Resolution 753.

Yusuf Akçayoğlu, CEO of İGA Airports Construction said: “We fully understand that having the right technology will be essential to the successful operation of the new airport and future-proofing it for decades to come. It is also critical to ensuring our passengers fully benefit from our new, world-class facilities by providing innovative systems that make the journey through the airport enjoyable and effortless. We are confident that we will conclude this cooperation successfully.”

Ersin İnankul, CIO of İGA Airports Construction said: “In building a new facility, we have the opportunity to implement technology or capacity to accommodate new technologies. One of the technologies that will become a must-have is baggage tracking to meet the June 2018 deadline of Resolution 753. As a service to our airlines, we have partnered with SITA to implement the technology to meet the requirements from day one of operation.”

Jihad Boueri, SITA Vice President Airports for Middle East, India and Africa said: “Baggage is one key area where technology is improving the passenger experience. Increasingly airlines and airports are helping to relieve the anxiety of waiting for bags to arrive by providing real-time information on the status of their bags to passengers. At the same time, by understanding where a bag is at any point in its journey, airlines will be able to act proactively to ensure that a bag is correctly allocated to a flight, ensuring it arrives with the passenger at their destination.”

SITA’s Baggage Report 2017 showed that baggage management by airlines globally improved again in 2016 as the industry focuses on technology investments. According to the report, the rate of mishandled bags was 5.73 bags per thousand passengers in 2016, down 12.25% from the previous year and the lowest ever recorded.

SITA’s local presence, combined with reliable global service, provides the airline with flexibility

Montreal, Canada | October 4, 2017–Air Transat, Canada’s number one holiday travel airline, has turned to SITA to support its route development in airports across the Caribbean, South and Central America. A fast time to market is key to the airline’s success and SITA delivers communications network services at new destinations quickly.

Air Transat faces challenges to uniformly connect and equip its staff across all destinations. Regardless of where it flies, it must have reliable network connectivity to access its applications. Over the next three years, SITA will provide Air Transat with network connectivity in Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Guadeloupe, Haiti, Honduras, Martinique, Mexico and Panama.

Many smaller and low-cost airports do not have common-use equipment and hardware has to be provided by the airline. However, it is not easy to transport computers in and out of countries quickly or have support staff available immediately to service the equipment; it’s also costly to store equipment in the off-season when not needed. SITA will provide end-user computing services to manage this challenge, allowing Air Transat to add new seasonal destinations quickly and smoothly.

Martin Lachance, Director, IT Solutions, Air Transat, said: “SITA has delivered a solution tailored exactly to our business needs. This is a combination of SITA’s network connectivity with global presence and local support, simplified billing, and fast streamlined implementation across our ever-changing seasonal network. SITA’s uniform global service—driven by a comprehensive service level agreement with standardized equipment and processes—controls costs and simplifies billing, giving us the flexibility we demand in our business.”

SITA has solved both problems of equipping staff and providing connectivity wherever Air Transat flies. Its global presence at airports and relationships with local governments enabled SITA to provide a turnkey solution. This included everything from customs clearance of laptops; deployment of the equipment once on-site; remotely supporting the equipment; maintenance and repair; spares provision; decommissioning; storage in the off-season if needed; and Internet/network connectivity. SITA’s global team of engineers have specific air transport industry and end-user computing experience and knowledge that allows them to efficiently support the Air Transat team in every location.

Randy Pizzi, SITA President, Americas, said: “SITA is excited to partner with Air Transat to deliver services that support the flexibility this dynamic business requires. The combination of our end-user computing services and reliable network availability allows Air Transat to save time and control costs while ensuring high levels of service and site management.”

Air Transat is a Canadian leisure airline based in Montreal, Quebec, operating scheduled and charter flights that serve about 60 destinations in 26 countries. In 2016, Air Transat was named Best North American Leisure Airline for the fifth consecutive year by Skytrax. In 2017, the airline is celebrating its 30th anniversary in business and its 30th year as a SITA member.

  • German Aerospace Center uses NetLine/Plan and NetLine/Sched

Raunheim, September 21, 2017 – Lufthansa Systems is supporting the work of the German Aerospace Center (DLR). The IT provider is making its NetLine/Plan and NetLine/Sched flight planning solutions available to the researchers at the DLR. The scientists are using the software from Lufthansa Systems to develop new air transport concepts and explore ways of improving the efficiency of network and flight planning. Airlines will thus benefit from lower costs, and passengers will enjoy greater punctuality.

“We are very interested in practical research and are pleased to be able to use NetLine/Plan and NetLine/Sched, since the two solutions are already employed by more than 70 airlines,” said Klaus Luetjens, head of Air Transport Operations and Infrastructures in the department Air Transportation Systems at the DLR. Airlines use NetLine/Plan to create optimized flight plans as part of their network planning strategy. The software simulates new connections, generates forecasts for passenger streams based on market data, and calculates the effects on costs and revenues. NetLine/Sched helps airlines with flight schedule management. It supports the evaluation of what-if scenarios prior to flight operations and automatically calculates their cost-effectiveness.

At the beginning of the project, the experts from Lufthansa Systems prepared the data basis, installed the software on DLR computers this summer and then trained the scientists. Following the successful completion of the project, the DLR researchers can now use the two NetLine products to quickly simulate various air transport concepts. For example, they can analyze how the development of a faster aircraft would affect flight plans and the airline market in general. The project will run until 2020, and the results will be published and made available to the industry.

Lufthansa Systems and the DLR have cooperated since 2016. “We benefit from their scientific findings, as data science is becoming increasingly important in aviation. Thanks to our cooperation with the DLR, we can further develop our products in a targeted way and continue to be an innovation leader,” said Pascal Mougnon, Head of Network Planning Solutions at Lufthansa Systems.

The research portfolio of the DLR ranges from basic research to the development of products for tomorrow. Since 2016, Lufthansa Systems and the DLR have been collaborating on a project for developing more robust flight plans. The German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) is supporting the project as part of its federal aviation research program. The scientific and technical knowledge they have acquired together will strengthen German industry and technology in general and the aviation sector in particular.

Atlanta | September 19, 2017– SITA, the technology company that provides JetBlue’s biometric exit checks at the boarding gate, today announced the success of its innovative technology used in the trial in Boston Logan International Airport and that it continues to work with the airline and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) in this program.

The program, which started in June on flights from Boston’s Logan International Airport, has proven hugely popular with JetBlue customers. When given the option, the vast majority choose to “board in a snap” by simply stepping up to a camera without having to show a boarding pass, passport or any other papers.

SITA’s biometric scanning technology has proven to be very accurate with close to 100% match-rate contributing to an efficient, pleasant and seamless experience. With this improved boarding JetBlue customers enjoy a better overall customer experience.

Joanna Geraghty, Executive Vice President Customer Experience, JetBlue, said: “SITA’s role as our technology partner helped us bring this innovative approach to boarding from an idea to reality. SITA was able to quickly and effectively support both our requirements and the specification of CBP. We could not be happier with the results of this trial and hope to work with SITA in future iterations of our self-boarding program.”

Randy Pizzi, SITA President, Americas, said: “SITA’s collaboration with JetBlue and CBP has resulted in this unique integrated biometric exit check and self-boarding solution. The results to date have been very positive with the vast majority of JetBlue customers choosing to use it. This acceptance is in line with our experience and the results of 2017 SITA Passenger IT Survey, which shows that not only do passengers prefer to use technology but when they do it boosts satisfaction rates.

“The accuracy and speed of the system shows how SITA’s technology can provide a new way for airlines to bring value to their customers. Over the coming months we will work with JetBlue and Government agencies to extend the use of this innovative and passenger-friendly technology. We look forward to continued progress together.”

John Wagner, Deputy Executive Assistant Commissioner, Office of Field Operations, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, said: “Working with industry partners like JetBlue allows us to explore the best use of technology to implement biometric exit checks while improving the passenger experience. The integrated and frictionless solution devised with the airline and SITA is proving a success for everyone – the airline, the passengers and CBP. We look forward to continued work with JetBlue and SITA.”

SITA provides self-service solutions at every step of the passenger journey from check-in to boarding at airports across the world. More than 165 airlines use its passenger processing applications and its common-use systems board more than 100 million passengers per year. Today SITA provides border management solutions to more than 40 Governments across the Americas, Asia, Europe, The Middle East and Africa.

Digitalization in the aircraft: Lufthansa Systems and Lufthansa Technik present collaborative connectivity solutions / New messenger app for mCabin

Raunheim/Long Beach | September 19, 2017–
Passengers now expect the same level of connectivity in the air that they enjoy on the ground. This is why Lufthansa Systems is focusing on connectivity at this year’s Airline Passenger Experience Expo (APEX) in Long Beach, California. Group subsidiary Lufthansa Technik is sharing a stand for the first time. The two Lufthansa Group companies, who collaborate closely in providing on-board Internet and entertainment, are both presenting their own connectivity solutions. Lufthansa Systems will demonstrate the multi-award-winning BoardConnect wireless inflight entertainment (IFE) platform and its different hardware versions, while Lufthansa Technik will showcase its LConnect hardware and service package. The airline IT provider is also presenting its new mCabin/Messenger app, one of the apps of the mCabin Product Line. Visit Lufthansa Systems and Lufthansa Technik fromSeptember 26 to 28 at APEX at stand #453.

“Like every other aspect of our lives, aviation is becoming ever more digital. Our BoardConnect solutions help make the time spent during the flight part of the passenger’s digital travel experience. This is about much more than just pure IFE solutions. People want to be connected. On-board Internet offers countless possibilities for further improving and personalizing services,” said Jan-Peter Gaense, Director Project & Certification BoardConnect at Lufthansa Systems. “And to provide a reliable Internet connection to our customers, we count on our colleagues at Lufthansa Technik.”

Cooperation between Lufthansa Systems and Lufthansa Technik
Two years ago, Lufthansa Systems and Lufthansa Technik entered into a long-term global partnership to offer airlines inside and outside of the Lufthansa Group a modern, multi-functional on-board IT platform (based on BoardConnect) with broadband Internet access. Lufthansa Systems is supplying BoardConnect Plus, the required technical infrastructure, such as the server and access points. If necessary, the digital BoardConnect platform with its open architecture can serve as the basis for an Internet portal. Lufthansa Technik – with its many years of experience in the field of aircraft modification – is handling the integration of all systems and components in the aircraft. The LConnect hardware and service package also covers all work required under aviation and certification regulations.

“Together we are in an ideal position to meet the growing demand for on-board Internet. The installation of LConnect takes a maximum of four days and can be carried out during a regular idle period. Parallel to this, our colleagues from Lufthansa Systems can install the BoardConnect systems in the cabin,” said Lukas Bucher, Head of Connectivity Programs at Lufthansa Technik. “We can therefore quickly provide fast broadband Internet access on fleets of any size.”

The primary partner for the satellite connection is Inmarsat, but the Lufthansa subsidiaries also work with other connectivity providers depending on the airline. The solution is currently being used successfully with three different satellite providers. BoardConnect is already running on a total of nearly 400 aircraft, and another 300 will follow in the next twelve months.

The BoardConnect product suite
BoardConnect enables passengers to use streaming technology during a flight to access an airline’s entertainment program on their own devices. The product suite includes three hardware versions: In addition to the permanently installed classic BoardConnect solution, there is the flexible BoardConnect Portable version and the BoardConnect Plus connectivity solution. The digital BoardConnect 5.0 platform runs on all three versions. Lufthansa Systems is also providing content such as movies, TV series, music and magazines with its BoardConnect Media Services. All products work in perfect harmony with each other and can be acquired separately or in combination.

New app in the mCabin product line
Lufthansa Systems is also presenting mCabin/Messenger – the messaging app for iOS, UWP and Android. Since this messaging service is role-based, users do not need to know the name and phone number of the message recipients, only their professional role and, if necessary, the flight number. The app is aimed at cabin crew and ground staff alike and enables fast, direct digital communication. It allows all airline employees to send important operational messages directly to the right person.

“Our mobile solutions for airline employees and cabin crew provide optimum support for airlines of all sizes with all business models as they digitalize their on-board processes. Airlines have expressed a lot of interest in this,” said Julie Ingleson, Product Manager Mobile Solutions/mCabin.

The modular mCabin crew app ensures smooth crew management and optimized processes during every phase of crew service. In addition to mCabin/Messenger, the product line includes two other apps: mCabin/Library+ document management application and mCabin/CityGuide travel guide platform.

Watch the new mCabin/Messenger video:https://www.lhsystems.com/solutions/mobile-solutions/mcabinmessenger

Watch the personal invite from Jan-Peter Gaense to visit Lufthansa Systems at APEX: https://youtu.be/0dJFB_LWyRI

As airports strive to find new ways to optimize operational processes and operating margins, the power of intelligent data analytics is presenting a new business opportunity for airport management. vb dashboxTM is a new Vision-BoxTM application that leverages operational data streams to transform everyday passenger data into meaningful business intelligence.

Lisbon, Portugal | September 6, 2017– Throughout the past decade, modern international airports have faced mounting challenges, from ensuring regulatory compliance, reducing traveler risk, enhancing passenger safety, facilitating flow capabilities, and optimizing its operating margins in a highly competitive industry. While the multiplying numbers of electronic passenger clearance touchpoints are easing some of these pressures, the amount of raw data these systems provide to authorities are exposing a new business opportunity for a more efficient and expedient airport environment.

In announcing the release of vb dashboxTM, Vision-BoxTM, the worldwide leader in passenger experience and border control solutions, is addressing this opportunity with a powerful new application that reshapes and reframes the way airports manage real-time passenger data intelligence streams, transforming them into a holistic airport passenger travel and behavioral information data center. vb dashboxTM accomplishes this by improving the everyday decision-making process, operational performance, and cost control of airport management by enhancing the granular detail of the information streams and providing practical tools to drill-down into metrics and key performance indicators of all airport and passenger data.

Integrated into the OrchestraTM Management Platform, the new and innovative web- based vb dashboxTM analytics application is designed to harness, analyze and give meaning to this raw data, giving all airport stakeholders the ability to manage and communicate business challenges more effectively and achieve better operational results. Together with OrchestraTM, vb dashboxTM extends the overall value of Vision-Box’s biometric solutions portfolio by offering an aggregated informational view of the entire airport walkthrough process, giving stakeholders a detailed view of passenger metrics and displaying the data in smart, penetrating graphics, available on all laptop, tablet and mobile platforms.

vb dashboxTM optimizes this viewing experience by allowing users to customize their personal performance flow analytics display. The visualization is customized using a widgets library, offering the user the capacity to create a tailored and personalized dashboard suited for individual data needs and offering particular insights into airport operations. This provides a live operational monitoring of the entire passenger clearance process with remote process control and a holistic view of data in clear, easy-to-read, interactive, and real-time charts.

The simple to use, browser-based, drag-and-drop interface uses a highly responsive design that gives any non-technical user an effective and dynamic experience, instantly responding to changes in parameters by applying different filters to assist in narrowing down the results to get to the core of the smart data. This can include business intelligence parameters, technical solution performance and passenger flow statistics among a myriad of other capabilities.

Highly secure, vb dashboxTM utilizes a privacy-by-design role-based control of the analytics and management of the data, with access and visualization restricted to authorized users. With 24/7 access to in-depth quality data intelligence, including passenger trends, solution performance, and full operational control across multiple locations and devices, vb dashboxTM offers key stakeholders the ability to share files and charts across the business network via robust reports with powerful filtering and drill-down capabilities.

“Vision-Box’s mission has always been to assist stakeholders in the aviation sector to achieve a higher level of airport operational efficiency while providing a safe and effective product, reduce risks, and improve operating costs”, says Miguel Leitmann, Vision-BoxTM CEO. “With this powerful new analytical tool, Vision-Box is delivering on this mission in giving airport authorities the ability to leverage their data into actionable business intelligence and optimize their processes through better utilization of information.”

The vb dashboxTM powerful integrated tools enable airport authorities to harness intelligent data capabilities to drive operational processes and business decisions. The availability of real-time data overview enables authorities to stay on top of complex passenger relationships and processes, providing a live real-time system performance overview to drive better decision making, real-time corrective actions, operational and quality of KPIs, plus much more, with seamless data analytics.

SITA enables Miami Airport app users to quickly tap and clear immigration and customs

Miami International Airport (MIA) is the first airport in the world to bring the convenience of Mobile Passport Control, the fast entry process into the USA, into its own airport app experience. US citizens and Canadian visitors arriving into Miami can now use the MIA Airport Official app to submit details to US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and simply receive a barcode on their phone to present for clearance.

This convenient service, developed by global air transport IT provider SITA and certified by US CBP for Mobile Passport Control, speeds up the entry process into the USA. As an integral part of MIA’s official app, the new mobile service builds on the personal travel assistant experience already being offered to Miami’s passengers.

“The goal of our mobile app has always been to put as many services as possible in the palm of the traveler’s hand,” said Miami-Dade Aviation Director Emilio T. González. “Now, with the help of SITA’s innovative technology, in addition to easily finding your way to all you need at MIA, North American passengers can now also breeze through passport control with the same customer-friendly travel app.”

Miami International Airport offers more flights to Latin America and the Caribbean than any other US airport. It is America’s third-busiest airport for international passengers, with more than half of its 44.6 million passengers on international travel.

SITA offers the service as an SDK (software development kit). The SDK has been authorized by CBP for airports, airlines and other travel app providers to incorporate the entry process into their own mobile app.

Randy Pizzi, SITA President, Americas, said: “We are very pleased to be a technology partner with MIA as they become the first to incorporate the convenience of US CBP Mobile Passport Control into their airport application. Passenger satisfaction increases when technology solutions, like SITA’s, make it easy for passengers to manage their journey using just one convenient application on their own smartphone or tablet.”

SITA’s innovative design ensures the CBP requirements are met, which reduces the certification process for app developers. It enables eligible travelers to use an airport or airline’s app on their mobile device to submit their passport information and answer CBP inspection-related questions prior to CBP inspection. The convenient service does not require pre-approval and is free to use.

Today the SDK from SITA is available to any international airport in the USA or any airline flying passengers to the USA. SITA is also in discussions with other governments who are looking to digitize their landing card, customs and border clearance procedures. Providing such services via mobile devices enables direct communication with travelers which supports secure pre-clearance and helps streamline the passenger journey.

Online service using Microsoft Azure cloud as a secure backup system for electronic navigation maps

Raunheim, Germany | August 3, 2017– Smooth flight operations are a top priority for airlines. Long delays or cancellations can result in high costs and damage to an airline’s image. Since pilots can not take off without navigation maps, backup solutions are essential to flight operations in case of a system failure. With its new cloud-based Lido/RouteManual Backup solution, Lufthansa Systems is offering a reliable and flexible online service as a digital backup for its electronic navigation maps.

Despite the popular trend towards a paperless flight deck, many airlines are still using paper maps as backup copies. But this negates some of the advantages of digital solutions because the paper maps still have to be printed out, picked up and carried onto the aircraft. “With Lido/RouteManual Backup, this administrative effort is a thing of the past. The new web-based solution enables fast, secure access to customized information – from anywhere, on any device,” said Igor Dimnik, Director Strategy and Market Development Lido/Navigation at Lufthansa Systems. “Pilots just need a functioning Internet connection to access the backup copy before a flight. They can view the maps in a browser or download them as PDF files. This forward-looking digital backup solution is Lufthansa Systems’ response to strong demand in the market.”

With digital solutions, there is always a certain risk of system failure. This is not due solely to the growing danger of cyberattacks. A minor software error, an operating system update that doesn’t support certain functions, a server outage or simply a malfunctioning device – there are many potential reasons for a temporary inability to access digital maps. For all of these cases, Lido/RouteManual Backup provides a reliable backup copy so that the aircraft can take off anyway.

Lido/eRouteManual complies with the rules of international aviation authorities. The online platform includes the same worldwide data as the map solution, and customer-specific information can be integrated as well. The backup system runs on Microsoft’s Azure cloud and is therefore independent of the infrastructure that Lufthansa Systems provides for its navigation apps. If there is a fault in the digital map solution or a server, the necessary data can still be accessed in a browser.

Airlines can choose between two different models of the Lido/RouteManual Backup solution. In single-user mode, there is one responsible administrator at the airline who has access to the online platform and can retrieve the required information if necessary and send it to the pilot. Alternatively, temporary access can be granted using a link and password. If an airline opts for multi-user mode, each pilot will have individual access to the solution. This gives the pilots control over their own updates and data, and they can access the platform quickly and directly if need be. In both cases, users can easily select the relevant destinations, view the maps in a browser or download them as interactive PDFs, store the data and even print it out if necessary.

SITA’s new common-use equipment speeds up passenger processing
Victoria | July 12, 2017– Air Seychelles, the national airline of the Republic of Seychelles, will be introducing SITA’s state-of-the-art common-use passenger processing systems (CUPPS) at Seychelles International Airport from today. This investment provides greater flexibility for international airlines operating from the airport by allowing them to share common-use terminal equipment for check-in and boarding.

The airline – which provides ground-handling services to airlines operating from Seychelles International Airport – is currently upgrading its technology to ensure a smooth travel experience every step of the way. The upgrade is being performed in partnership with the Seychelles Civil Aviation Authority and SITA, a global technology provider to the air transport industry.

The new systems will optimize the use of terminal facilities, speed up the flow of passengers and improve service levels for all international travelers flying from Seychelles International Airport.

Roy Kinnear, Chief Executive Officer of Air Seychelles, said: “The new common-use terminal equipment will enable Air Seychelles to connect to various Departure Control Systems used by other airlines operating to Seychelles, providing more flexibility to our ground handling operations.

“Even more importantly, it will enable us to streamline the check-in and boarding process for all the international travelers that are handled at Seychelles International Airport, making sure they have a smooth experience. This development from SITA follows the long list of innovative technological solutions which we have implemented to ensure an improved guest experience.”

Gilbert Faure, Chief Executive Officer of the Seychelles Civil Aviation Authority, said: “Introducing cutting-edge CUPPS infrastructure at Seychelles International Airport puts us on par with some of the most modern airports in the world. Having a standardized system for handling passengers will improve the airport experience for all international travelers, irrespective of the airline they are flying with, which is a fantastic achievement. We have developed a strong relationship with both Air Seychelles and SITA and are pleased to have worked together to install this new technology.”

Maneesh Jaikrishna, Vice President Indian Subcontinent, Eastern & Southern Africa said: “Our common-use systems bring new efficiencies to Seychelles International Airport for both Air Seychelles and other operators. This in turn will have a dramatic impact on passengers who will benefit from a smooth and seamless travel experience.”

Also: Best branding in the IT sector – Aviation IT specialist receives German Brand Award in Gold in category of “Industry Excellence in Branding – IT”

Raunheim/Berlin, Germany | June 30, 2017– Lufthansa Systems today announced that it received a German Brand Award as “Corporate Brand of the Year 2017” yesterday evening in Berlin for its new branding. This prestigious award in the “Excellence in Branding” category, the top tier of the competition, recognizes outstanding brand management across all industries. The German Brand Award is presented by the German Design Council and the German Brand Institute to honor successful brands, consistent brand management and sustainable brand communication. The award was presented for the first time in 2016.

“The Lufthansa Systems brand has been overhauled. The realignment has also shaped the company’s identity, which embraces the enthusiasm, love and passion for the future of the airline industry and consistently reflects it in detail. An impressively successful and clean identity, with a clear, harmonious and user-friendly design, which has also made an appealing break with the typical visual language – exclusively depicting aviation technology – and for this reason alone stands out in a refreshing way. The jury considers this a great achievement, one which is not necessarily a given for subsidiary identities of this kind,” explained Andrej Kupetz, executive director of the German Design Council and chairman of the German Brand Award jury, justifying the jury’s decision.

The new Lufthansa Systems brand identity aims to improve the company’s visibility in the airline and aviation market and emotionalize the brand by using expressive, striking and unconventional images, among other things. “We not only want to win over customers with the quality of our products, we want to excite them,” said Ulrike Behrens, Head of Marketing at Lufthansa Systems, who accepted the award at the ceremony in Berlin. “Lufthansa Systems is a dynamic brand that will keep evolving in the future. It is important to us that our development to date has been recognized in this way. It makes us proud and motivates us to continue down this path in the future.”

In addition to the cross-industry award, Lufthansa Systems received a German Brand Award in Gold in the category of “Industry Excellence in Branding – IT.” The key criterion here was the company’s digital Brand Center. “With its Brand Center, Lufthansa Systems continues to move consistently toward the digital future. This makes it possible for employees and external partners alike to have an even stronger emotional experience with the brand, and it enables more open dialog about communication and design. Featuring an attractive and modern design, the Brand Center is a virtual platform with impressive visuals and content that express what constitutes the Lufthansa Systems brand and the spirit of the company. This is brand communication on an extremely high level,” the jury said.

Olivier Krueger, CEO of Lufthansa Systems, commented on the company’s brand identity, saying, “We want to make airlines the winners of the digitalization megatrend. We can’t do this by reacting to the market, only by shaping it ourselves with creativity, a wealth of ideas and passion. Our new brand conveys our creativity, our wealth of ideas and our passion. It is a tremendous honor for us that the expert jury also sees it this way.”

Only companies that were nominated by the brand scouts and expert committees of the German Brand Institute for the German Brand Award 2017 could take part in the competition.

Intelligent mobility: Safer flights thanks to Lido/SurfaceData – digital obstacle database enables early detection of air traffic obstacles
Raunheim/Berlin, Germany | June 29, 2017– Lufthansa Systems today announced that it has received the German Mobility Award for its Lido/SurfaceData obstacle database, which was released in early 2017. This award is presented by the “Germany – Land of Ideas” initiative and the German Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure. Lufthansa Systems is one of ten award-winners chosen by the 16-member expert jury from a total of 170 applicants. The winning projects in this year’s competition, which focused on safety, reveal the opportunities that digitalization offers for the intelligent mobility of tomorrow. The early detection and avoidance of obstacles is essential to safe aircraft navigation. The award-winning Lido/SurfaceData global obstacle database is the basis for digital warning systems that increase air traffic safety.

“Lufthansa Systems has long maintained an internal database of aviation obstacles, but this was tailored solely to the requirements of its own products,” said Michael Sauter, Head of Product Development Lido/SurfaceData at Lufthansa Systems. “With Lido/SurfaceData, Lufthansa Systems is now offering a digitally certified and globally standardized database of man-made obstacles, such as skyscrapers, bridges, cranes and wind turbines, which can be used for a variety of external applications. For example, avionics systems can visualize the obstacles as 3D models.”

Digital terrain models and aviation obstacle databases are becoming increasingly important, especially in light of autonomous, uncrewed aircraft. The obstacle data based on the Lufthansa Systems database is processed in accordance with RTCA DO-200 and meets the RTCA industry standards DO-276 and DO-291. Intensive quality controls in each phase of the process guarantee a premium product. Furthermore, the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) has certified the Lido/SurfaceData data in accordance with LoA Type 1 and will also regularly audit it in the future.

Lido/SurfaceData comprises information on more than one million obstacles worldwide, including both fixed and mobile objects that could pose a threat to air traffic safety. This standardized collection of obstacle data is based on official sources such as Aeronautical Information Publications (AIP). Lido/SurfaceData is currently being used primarily to calculate minimum safe altitudes, in enhanced ground proximity warning systems (EGPWS), and in terrain awareness and warning systems (TAWS) and synthetic vision systems. Airlines and airport operators can use the data for analyses or designing flight procedures. The data can be applied in helicopter software as well. Future technologies, such as the enhancement of terrain models with augmented reality and uncrewed flights, could also benefit from this data. Digital warning systems and technical support for synthetic vision improve the situational awareness of pilots and therefore increase air traffic safety.

The award ceremony was held on June 28 at the German Federal Ministry of Transport in Berlin. Jury chairwoman Dorothee Baer, Parliamentary State Secretary for the Federal Minister of Transport and Digital Infrastructure, and Ute Weiland, Managing Director of the “Germany – Land of Ideas” initiative, honored the people responsible for the ten award-winning projects.

“We are proud to have received the German Mobility Award for Lido/SurfaceData,” said Olivier Krueger, CEO of Lufthansa Systems. “This year’s theme of safety is an issue particularly close to our hearts. If our digital solutions can improve flight safety and contribute to even more intelligent mobility, then we will have achieved our goal.”

As an aviation IT specialist, Lufthansa Systems is an expert in the field of aircraft navigation. Lido/Navigation solutions are being used successfully by more than 200 airlines and customers of all sizes, with various business models and different alliances. Each year, around 570 million passengers worldwide take flights that rely on paper-based or electronic navigation maps from Lufthansa Systems. In the context of route planning, Lufthansa Systems also has years of experience in processing obstacle data.

2017 Passenger IT Trends Survey shows tech is making a difference at every step of the journey
Geneva, Switzerland | June 27, 2017– Passenger satisfaction is higher during the airline journey when self-service technologies are used, particularly at bag tag and collection, and passport checkpoints. This is according to the 2017 SITA Passenger IT Trends Survey, a global survey released today by IT provider SITA and co-sponsored by Air Transport World. The survey shows that passengers rate their journey very highly with an overall satisfaction rate of 8.2 of out 10 but this is boosted even further when technologies such as mobile services and biometrics are used.

Ilya Gutlin, President, Air Travel Solutions, SITA, said: “Passengers are increasingly comfortable with the use of technology in their everyday lives, and they are demanding more services as they appreciate the benefits technology can bring to their journey. Airports and airlines can take note that technology solutions can boost passenger satisfaction every step of the way.”

In the global air transport industry, identity checks are a vital element of the passenger journey. SITA’s survey shows that technology, such as biometrics, can support security while offering a better passenger experience. Automated identity checks at passport control and boarding increases passenger satisfaction.

A total of 37% of travelers surveyed by SITA used automated ID control on their last flight. Of these, 55% said they had used biometrics at departure security, 33% for boarding and 12% for international arrivals. Looking forward, 57% of passengers said they would use biometrics for their next trip.

Passengers who use biometrics are highly satisfied. In fact, they rated the experience 8.4, well above the ratings for face-to-face transactions at passport check (8) and boarding (8.2), demonstrating passenger acceptance of this secure technology to deliver a seamless journey.

Baggage collection is another area where technology is improving the passenger experience. Airlines and airports are helping to relieve the anxiety of waiting for bags to arrive by providing real-time information to passengers. On their last flight, more than half (58%) of passengers who checked in bags received real-time bag-collection information upon arrival.

These passengers were happier than those who did not receive any information, rating their experience 8.4 out 10. Passengers are even more satisfied when they receive the information to their mobile devices. SITA’s survey shows that this bumped up satisfaction levels by an extra 10%.

Technology is also driving passenger satisfaction for baggage management earlier in the journey as more airlines and airports offer self-bag tagging. The use of this technology increased satisfaction to a rating of 8.4 out of 10. Nearly half (47%) of all passengers took advantage of a self-service tagging option on their most recent trip, which is a healthy increase from 31% in 2016. As more self-bag tag options are made available we can expect passenger satisfaction at this point of the journey to increase.

This year’s survey also highlights that as passengers become more familiar using technology during travel, the more likely they are to switch to newer, more efficient platforms. They are increasingly using smarter, mobile-enabled websites to book and check-in. Airline and airport apps, meanwhile, meet passengers’ desire for new services to help them better manage their journey. They want personalized information about their flight, their baggage and how to find their gate directly on their mobile device.

The appetite for new services using technology is high: three quarters (74%) of passengers say they would definitely use flight and gate alerts pushed to their mobile devices; 57% would use airport wayfinding; and 57% would use biometrics to smooth identification each step of the way.

Gutlin said: “Passengers aren’t deciding anymore whether they should use technology but which technology to use. They want to make each step of the journey as easy as possible. Tech adoption will be driven by both context and usability. For this reason, a clear focus on the end-users’ demands should shape the services airlines and airports offer.”

This is the 12th edition of the SITA/ATW Passenger IT Trends Survey. It was conducted with more than 7,000 passengers from 17 countries across the Americas, Asia, Europe, the Middle East and Africa representing almost three-quarters of global passenger traffic.

2017 Air Transport IT Summit – Barcelona, Spain | May 24, 2017– SITA, the IT specialist that is transforming air travel through technology, today rolled out several community innovation demos with an eye toward the future at this year’s Air Transport IT Summit. These forward-looking innovations are part of SITA’s 2016 multi-million investment across five main focus areas to explore new solutions to some of the air transport industry’s most pressing challenges.

The five areas are; new baggage tracking capabilities to meet IATA’s Resolution 753; identity management to enable secure and rapid passenger flow through airports; the facilitation of IATA’s New Distribution Capability (NDC); an industry-wide disruption warning system; and enhancing cyber security across the industry.

Demos shocased included the innovative WorldTracer Ground Delivery Baggage Tracking App which allows airlines to track delayed bags until they reach their final destination and Travel Identity of the Future, a new approach to identity management to enable secure and rapid passenger flow through airports. The multi-million dollar community innovation investment is over and above SITA’s continued investment in new products. It is aimed at looking further into the future of promising technologies or new ways of doing things that could have a big impact and significant benefit to the air transport community.

In addition, SITA announced seven new member benefits to enhance nine offers made available in 2015. The offers, exclusive to SITA’s 400 plus members, consist of free trials and preferential contract terms for services. These include SITA’s Mobile Boarding Pass API, which gives airlines flexibility to easily create and distribute mobile boarding passes and SITA’s sophisticated baggage services BagConnect and WorldTracer Tablet. Members can also benefit from free consultancy services for SITA’s cloud services and Horizon solutions along with preferential terms for messaging services SITATEXT Online and the new MessageIntelligence Archive.

Jappe Blaauw, President of the SITA Council, said: “SITA is a member-driven organization and these offers are designed to offer value and support in the areas that we know our 400 plus members are interested such as improved baggage management, driving the adoption of mobile self-service and taking advantage of cloud services. These exclusive offers will allow our members to quickly evaluate and adopt new and efficient technologies across the air transport industry.”

The Air Transport IT Summit, which is attended by more than 400 air transport industry professionals, also provides SITA with the opportunity to recognize its valued members. Working with its air transport industry partners to define next-generation technology for more than 65 years, SITA recognized numerous milestone members including 60 years of partnership with Air Serbia, Middle East Airlines, Pakistan International Airlines and Qantas Airways. And 50 years of partnership with Adria Airways, Arabian Airlines, Libyan Airlines, Meridiana Fly, Saudi Arabian Airlines and United Airlines.