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3rd Annual Business Travel Intelligence Summit
SITA, the specialist air transport IT provider, today outlined its vision of the future of mobility in the industry as the 2009 Airline IT Trends Survey reveals that 78% of airlines intend to adapt their web-sites to work on mobile phones by 2012 opening a whole new vista of convenience and self-service for passengers.
CANNES - 1 July 2009 - The airline-owned company also announced the creation of a Mobile Workforce Innovation Focus Group to define industry requirements for a common-use context aware platform at airports to boost the efficiency of airside operations and reduce flight delays through the improved provision of mobile solutions to airline and airport staff.In support of industry demand for mobile phone applications, SITA today demonstrated a mobile web application it is trialling with Malaysia Airlines which could deliver mobile phone check-in and other functionality to the web-enabled smart phones that are now becoming the standard offering of the major providers, including Nokia, Windows Mobile, the i-Phone, Google's Android phone and the Blackberry. The demo application is supported by a rendering engine which provides consistent formatting for the different screen formats of these phones. Jim Peters, SITA Chief Technology Officer, said: "This research development, combined with the arrival of 100% Bar Coded Boarding Passes next year, could create the necessary impetus to make mobile phones an essential travel tool for flight booking, check-in and boarding."According to the 2009 Airline IT Trends Survey released today at the SITA Air Transport IT Summit in Cannes, 38% of respondent airlines do not provide any mobile services as they see no clear business case yet and only 20% currently offer mobile phone check-in.Peters said: "The Airline IT Trends Survey shows that only 15% of airlines have optimised their websites for mobile phones. Our approach in SITA Labs is to develop a common platform to maximise the use of mobile phones as a travel tool. Our prototype interface works via the mobile device's web browser, and we ‘mobilise' rather than simply miniaturise the airline website for the convenience of the passenger eliminating unnecessary content."When it comes to airline workforce mobility, the Airline IT Trends Survey 2009 shows that 51% of respondents plan to deploy data-centric mobile solutions at key hubs, and 37% are waiting to do so pending the availability of sufficient wireless access coverage at airports.Announcing the creation of a Mobile Workforce Focus Group, SITA's Vice President for Innovation, Technology and Research, Greg Ouillon, today said: "The biggest drawback of existing mobile solutions today is the difficulty of adapting them to meet the real-time needs of workers in the airport environment and the cost of deployment."The key to success is contextual information, adapting information delivery dynamically, to completely transform airport business processes especially for key on-the-ground staff such as turnaround dispatch teams and maintenance engineers."SITA's approach is to deploy a common-use context-aware platform at airports to support multiple mobile application scenarios (including passenger management, baggage processing, aircraft turn-around and airport operations). Working with Appear, the leader in context-aware software infrastructure, SITA has deployed a live pilot of a mobile workforce solution for line maintenance with the Portuguese airline TAP. Other pilots are also getting under way.Ouillon said: "Managing unexpected events which are the main cause of aircraft delays is a significant challenge for airlines as it impacts both customer satisfaction and their bottom line. Providing the common-use platform to the industry to deploy context-aware mobile workforce solutions will enable a significant shift in operations at airports with real-time reporting, pro-active decision making, cost savings, and enhanced customer service,"About SITASITA is the world's leading specialist in air transport communication and IT solutions. SITA delivers and manages business solutions for airline, airport, GDS, government and other customers over the world's most extensive network, which forms the communications backbone of the global air transport industry. SITA's portfolio includes managed global communications, infrastructure and outsourcing services, as well as services for airline commercial management and passenger operations, flight operations, aircraft operations and air-to-ground communications, airport management and operations, baggage operations, transportation security and border management, cargo operations and more. With a customer service team of over 1,600 staff around the world, SITA invests significantly in achieving best-in-class customer service, providing integrated local and global support for both its communications and IT application services.SITA has two main subsidiaries: OnAir, which is the leading provider of in-flight connectivity, and CHAMP Cargosystems, the world's only IT company dedicated solely to air cargo. SITA also operates two joint ventures providing services to the air transport community: Aviareto for aircraft asset management and CertiPath for secure electronic identity management. SITA is one of the world's most international companies. Its global reach is based on local presence, with services for around 550 air transport industry members and 3,200 customers in over 200 countries and territories. In 2009, the company celebrates 60 years in business. Set up in 1949 with 11 member airlines, SITA today employs people of more than 140 nationalities, speaking over 70 different languages. SITA had consolidated revenues of over US$1.42 billion (€1.06 billion) in 2007. For further information go to www.sita.aero.About AppearAppear is the leading provider of context-aware software infrastructure designed to power the next generation of mobile applications and services. Using situational information (context), the AppearIQ suite of products transforms ordinary wireless data networks into rich multimedia channels that deliver information, voice, video and messages to mobile computer users. By collecting and sharing context, Appear's solutions eliminate information overload and ensure users have exactly the information they need, when and where they need it. Industry leaders in transportation, retail, telecommunications and government use AppearIQ. Appear has an extensive partner network including industry leaders Cisco, Motorola, Orange Business Services, SITA, Thales and Logica in order to deliver innovative, end-to-end wireless and mobile solutions. The company is privately held and headquartered in Stockholm, Sweden and with offices across Europe.Visit us at www.appearnetworks.com