Virgin Atlantic Testing Google Glass to Aid Airline Passengers
Virgin Atlantic says that Google Glass and similar wearable computing devices can help employees assist passengers throughout all phases of travel, including boarding and in-flight.Virgin Atlantic will use Google Glass to test how it and similar wearable computing innovations could help the airline assist passengers from their arrival at an airport through boarding and departure, and even with their in-flight experiences. The Glass experiments at Virgin Atlantic, which begin on Feb. 11, were unveiled by the airline in connection with a recent study that gathered data from some 10,000 airline passengers about the state and future of airline travel. One of the key results of the study, according to the airline, is that many of the surveyed passengers often decried how the experience of flying has lessened over the last several decades and is no longer the exciting, wondrous and luxurious means of travel that it often was in the past. That's where the idea to test Google Glass and similar devices came into play. "While it's fantastic that more people can now fly than ever before, the fact that air travel has become so accessible has led to some of the sheen being lost for many passengers," Dave Bulman, the director of IT for Virgin Atlantic, said in a statement. "By being the first in the industry to test how Google Glass and other wearable technology can improve customer experience, we are upholding Virgin Atlantic's long tradition of shaking things up and putting innovation at the heart of the flying experience."
The airline's six-week-long Google Glass pilot project will be visible to passengers as they arrive at London Heathrow airport starting Feb. 11, according to the airline. "Concierge staff in the airline's Upper Class Wing will be using Google Glass and other wearable technology to deliver the industry's most high tech and personalized customer service yet."