Airlines slow to adopt mobile solutions

7 Jul 2009 by Mark Caswell

A survey by air transport IT provider SITA has revealed that over a third of airlines do not provide any mobile services, while only one in five offers mobile check-in.

According to the 2009 Airline IT Trends Survey, 38 per cent of respondent carriers said they do not provide mobile solutions as “they see no clear business case yet”, while only 20 per cent currently offer mobile check-in, and just 15 per cent have optimised their website for mobile use.

However the survey also revealed that 78 per cent of airlines intend to adapt their websites to work on mobile phones by 2012.

SITA said it is currently trialling a mobile web application with Malaysia Airlines, which could deliver mobile phone check-in and other functionality to web-enabled smart phones. Key to this is application is the ability to provide consistent formatting for the different screen formats of these phones.

Said Jim Peters, SITA chief technology officer: “The Airline IT Trends Survey shows that only 15 per cent 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.”

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Report by Mark Caswell

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