i3 - November/December 2019 - 23

Left to Right: Courtesy of AIRPOD, Courtesy of Delta.

Tech advances
are making
travel more
efficient.

different developers and discovered that biometric algorithms are now far
superior than they had been just a few years ago. In fact, NIST reported
"just 0.2% of searches failed this year, compared with a 4% failure rate in
2014 and 5% in 2010."
Not surprisingly, the use of FRT is expected to grow into a $9.8 billion
market by 2023 (up from $3.8 billion in 2017).
Veridium reports that the appeal of FRT actually stretches across several
different generations: millennials (under 35) love the speed, while gen
X-ers (ages 35 to 55) like not having to remember lots of different passwords and baby boomers (55 and older) appreciate the added security.
Interestingly, it's the gen X-ers that use biometrics the most right now
(about 41%, says Veridium) when it comes to travel.
That might explain why 77% of airports (and 71% of airlines), according
to research from SITA, are planning to incorporate biometric ID management in the next five years.
Another trend to watch is the way that apps are being developed to harness the power of social media that so many people are already using. A
good example is EasyJet's Look&Book, a new app created by VCCP, a creative agency in London that uses AI to help users pinpoint and book travel
based on an Instagram photo.
Here's how it works:
1. A user uploads a screenshot from Instagram to the app with just one tap
on a smart device.
2. The app will then identify the location using AI technology.
3. Next, it finds any available EasyJet flights to get to and from the destination featured in the photo (the low-cost airline is based in the U.K. and
serves both Europe and North Africa). There are still some blips in the
technology, but VCCP says for the most part the technology is pretty good
at identifying the location shown in the picture.
4. Using Microsoft's Azure APIs, the app auto-completes the booking fields
in just a few minutes making it super fast and easy for a user to actually
book the flight.
C TA . t e c h / i 3

"The fact that Instagram is a huge source
of travel inspiration isn't news to anyone,"
explains Alex Dalman, an account executive at VCCP. "It's people's peer networks,
not branded content, that are the more
natural source of inspiration." The belief
here is that by tapping into the power of
social media apps that people are already
widely using, travel companies can make
it that much easier to book trips and take
advantage of algorithms that are already
capturing so much of a user's personal
information, likes and habits.
According to Daniel Young, head of digital experience at EasyJet, the app is also
"genuinely useful for passengers, is a lot of
fun to use and it's commercially minded."
The goal for this app and others like it
is to eventually expand to work with other
popular social media apps, especially
ones that target a younger demographic,
like Snapchat.

A SMART CITY ON THE SEA

Carnival Cruise Line, one of the largest
international passenger cruise lines in the
world, has been embarking on several
innovative ways of improving the technological experiences of its passengers. Most
notably, it's turning its more than 100 ships
traveling to more than 740 destinations
worldwide into smart cities at sea.
Carnival tapped
John Padgett, the
mastermind behind
D i s n e y 's
Io Tfocused MagicBand
and MyMagic+, to
rethink the way the
cruise ship company
uses both AI and
IoT to enhance the
travel experience on
and off land. He's
now Carnival's chief
experience and
innovation officer.
The first step in this massive project was
rolling out the Ocean Medallion, a waterproof device about the size of a quarter
that can be worn or carried by passengers.
First tested on the Regal Princess, a 1,110foot ship that can carry 3,500 people, the
medallion allows users to customize their
experience to access shows, events and
special areas of the ship, as well as pay for

70% of users
would actually
like to see
more biometric
authentication
being used in
technology for
two main
reasons: speed
and security.

NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2019

23


https://cta.tech/i3

i3 - November/December 2019

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