Airbus, in cooperation with Japan Airlines and JAL Engineering, has developed a prototype application supporting new training solutions, taking advantage of the world’s most advanced mixed reality technology, Microsoft HoloLens and immersive headsets.

This will enable the airline community to benefit from cost-effective and highly enhanced training and operational solutions, pushing the boundaries of what is currently available.

HoloLens and immersive headsets provide access to aircraft digital data which can be viewed from any angle to run specific aircraft procedures, virtually.

This innovative technology brings key business value as users can learn from anywhere, without the need of the physical aircraft, via a holographic coach or an interactive, shared 3D virtual system.

“Aircraft manufacturer Airbus and airline operator JAL have cooperated together and combined high expertise from the both sides on this innovation, making a step forward into a new training era.



“The success of this cooperation will set new standards in terms of training for the industry,” said Yuji Akasaka, managing executive officer, engineering and maintenance, president of JAL Engineering.

Airbus recently became one of the rare industrial players to be a member of the Microsoft Mixed Reality Partner Program.

As such, Airbus expertise in mixed reality is not only recognised but certified by Microsoft, meaning the company can build and exploit mixed reality on behalf of Microsoft.

Stéphane Ginoux, president, Airbus Japan, said: “We believe this technology, developed in cooperation with JAL and JAL Engineering, will bring significant value across our business.

“It will change fundamentally the way people interact with our data and work process.”

United Airlines has announced a new enhancement to its app that will allow customers to receive boarding passes when connecting to 19 airline partners on their smart phones.

This is a feature which no other US carrier currently offers.

The functionality will be available for customers traveling on United who are making an onward connection on another carrier and will improve the functionality of United’s app, which is used by over 500 million times a year by customers.

“As we continue to make improvements to the United app, we found that simply allowing our customers to access boarding passes for their entire itinerary within the same app made a big difference,” said Kate Gebo, chief customer officer at United.

“Our partnerships with Star Alliance carriers and other partner airlines can take our customers to over a thousand destinations around the world, and we’re excited to be the first US carrier to provide customers with this convenience when connecting to partners.”

The following airline partners’ boarding passes are now accessible through the United app, with more partners to be added in the near future:

  • Adria Airways
  • Aegean Airlines
  • Air Canada
  • Air New Zealand
  • ANA
  • Asiana Airlines
  • Austrian Airlines
  • Azul Brazilian Airlines
  • Brussels Airlines
  • Cape Air
  • Croatia Airlines
  • EVA Airways
  • LOT Polish Airlines
  • Lufthansa
  • Scandinavian Airlines
  • Shenzhen Airlines
  • THAI Airways
  • Turkish Airlines

Through its partnerships with other airlines, United is able to connect customers to approximately 1,300 destinations around the world.

Customers can book flights on United’s partners, as well as earn and redeem United MileagePlus miles on its partner airlines through the United app.

Marriott International, Inc., the global hospitality leader with over 6,200 properties in 125 countries and territories, has radically enhanced the job search and apply experience with the launch of MC – the Marriott Careers chatbot for Facebook Messenger. Powered by data-driven logic and specialized algorithms, the hospitality industry’s first virtual assistant for job seekers creates a more personalized and efficient experience while delivering several other benefits to users who have an interest in a Marriott career.

MC converses with job seekers much like a human, guides them to easily apply for open jobs based on discipline and location, and provides education on the company culture and values.  Additionally, a brief quiz within the conversation offers job seekers a fun way to learn which of the 30 Marriott hotel brands may align more closely with their interests.  Job seekers can chat with MC by downloading the latest version of Facebook Messenger and adding Marriott Careers, or by visiting Marriott Careers on the Facebook website and clicking Message.

MC provides information about some of the most commonly asked questions from job seekers, such as:

  • “Do you have event manager job openings in Chicago?”
  • “Do you have restaurant manager job openings in San Francisco?”
  • “How do I get in contact with a recruiter?”
  • “How many brands does Marriott offer?”
  • “What are Marriott’s core values?”

“Personalization is a principle that is changing the expectations of digital audiences globally and with recent advancements in automated technology, we have the opportunity to enhance the search and apply experience for thousands of job seekers,” said David Rodriguez, Executive Vice President and Global Chief Human Resources Officer for Marriott International.  “To attract the best talent, we need to remain ahead of the curve in tracking and responding to trends particularly as we try to reach the next generation of Marriott associates.  As today’s job seekers are drawn to companies committed to values and ethics, our ability to educate them on our corporate values and our brands in a fun and personal way is a game changer for hiring.”


Innovation has always been part of the Marriott story. Over the last few years alone, Marriott has launched several new ideas to help put the company at the forefront of travel.  Recently, Aloft Hotels, the innovation incubator for savvy global travelers, launched the first ChatBotlr, a new chatbot that gives guests an additional way to make service requests. Aloft’s ChatBotlr joins Marriott’s other newly implemented service innovations powered by technology. Marriott Rewards chatbots are available on Facebook Messenger, Slack and soon, We-Chat and Google Assistant, and serve loyalty members before, during and between stays.

“We are in the business of delivering memorable hotel experiences and the use of the careers chatbot is an extension of that,” said Rodriguez.  “By embracing this messaging technology, we are able to provide an around-the-clock, personalized experience that is meant to simplify the job seeking process.”

Marriott has consistently been recognized for its culture of putting people first. The company was recently recognized as a LEGEND by Great Place to Work® after 20 consecutive years as a FORTUNE 100 Best Company to Work For®.  Other awards include recognition by DiversityInc as one of the top 10 companies for diversity and inclusion, and by Fortune as one of the Top 10 Best Workplaces for Women and Top 100 Best Places to Work for Millennials.

Global Sources Electronics, the world's largest electronics sourcing show, opens today at Hong Kong's AsiaWorld-Expo. Held in two phases, Consumer Electronics and Mobile Electronics, the combined events feature more than 6,500 booths of the world's latest electronics products.

Running from Oct. 11 to 14, Consumer Electronics includes 3,700 booths of home, outdoor and auto electronics, and features computer and peripherals, VR and gaming, components, and smart living products. It will also include product launch, experience and demo zones to highlight innovative products and technologies.

The Mobile Electronics phase will take place from Oct. 18 to 21 with a focus on the latest smartphones, tablets, AR/VR, wearables and mobile accessories.

Tommy Wong, President of Global Sources Electronics Group, said: "We are committed to nurturing innovation and showcasing new and innovative products. The show is an important platform for technologies and idea exchange."

Product launch area to highlight new products and technologies

The show will feature a Launch Zone showcasing cutting-edge products. It is complemented by a Product Gallery and an Experience Zone where attendees can get hands-on experience with new technologies.

Other highlights of the show include:

An expanded VR & Gaming Pavilion with an experience zone where attendees can try out exciting gaming devices including AR guns, VR race cars and mixed reality devices.
Asia's largest Outdoor Electronics Pavilion showcases electric personal transporters, drones, robots and action cameras.
Smart Living Pavilion covers smart security, lighting, entertainment, appliances and gadgets. It also features Hong Kong's largest collection of security products for home, commercial and public use.
New product zones highlight smart driving products, eBikes, voice-activated speakers and devices, and batteries.
Next-Gen Components Zone gives buyers a closer look into what's going to be inside new tech products for automobiles, drones, robotics, smart home security systems and wearables.
Hong Kong's largest computer and peripherals, and auto electronics pavilions.
Asia's largest consumer electronics startup event

Startup Launchpad spans both phases of the Global Sources Electronics show with 240 booths featuring new products in categories including smart home, sports tech, drones, STEAM products and other IoT devices. Buyers will be among the first to see some of the world's most revolutionary electronics ideas. Startup Launchpad also includes conference programs covering investment and fundraising, product design and development, and manufacturing and distribution. More information is available at

A new Startup Investors Forum will be held on Oct. 12 where industry experts will share insights and lead thought-provoking discussions on startup investing trends, strategies and case studies. The Forum is an excellent networking opportunity for angel investors, venture capitalists, legal and accounting professionals, and business owners looking for startup investments.

Services for online and Amazon sellers

A wide range of services will help online and Amazon sellers source more effectively. This includes products from 900 exhibitors that accept small orders and seminars featuring online retail experts.

Global Sources Electronics is expected to attract buyers from more than 140 countries and territories including purchasing decision makers from ADI Systems, Brookstone, Carrefour, Darty Asia, Eurogroup, Fossil, Groupe Batteur, Hammacher Schlemmer, Imaginarium, Jasco Products, Krusell International, Lexibook, Merlion, NXP Semiconductors, Panasonic, QD Cellular, Real SB Warenhaus, Sears, Target Australia, The Home Depot, The Source, Verbatim, WHSmith, ZipKord and many more.

The app enables buyers to shortlist exhibitors; find booths, take pictures and then follow exhibitors after the show. The At the Show newsletter provides daily reports and live videos on the hottest products.

The show is complemented year-round by the industry's leading websites, accessible from Updated daily, each site delivers exclusive content, including Analyst's Choice products, an unbiased selection of new and innovative items.

Opening hours for the show are:

Oct. 11-13 from 9:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Oct. 14 from 9:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

FCM Travel Solutions is taking its technology offering to new levels with the launch of FCM Connect, an innovative, next-generation suite of interconnected business travel tools.

The global travel management company has invested significantly in research and development of new and enhanced proprietary and best-in-class solutions to create a complete travel resource that transforms the user’s experience, whether booker, traveller or manager.

The gateway to FCM Connect is ‘HUB’, a single sign-on connection point to multiple tools and resources, from pre-trip approval and booking, to traveller tracking and reporting.

The new HUB interface is designed for easy interaction and can be accessed via PC, tablet or mobile device.

HUB’s dashboard can be personalised in design and configuration for use by travel bookers, managers or travellers, giving each user visibility of the information that is relevant to them.



HUB connects the user to the following eight integrated new or evolutionary FCM-owned technology tools and superior third-party solutions.

These can be tailored globally, regionally or locally to suit an organisation’s exact travel programme requirements.

“We believe technology should move our customers forward, and the next generation release of our technology offering, FCM Connect, is designed to do just that,” said Marcus Eklund, global general manager, FCM Travel Solutions.

“After extensive client consultation, we have channelled the results into product development and refined our end-to-end solutions to give travellers, bookers and managers the optimum framework that addresses their respective desires to be more connected to the entire booking, travel and management process.

“However, FCM Connect also supports our clients across the spectrum of their travel programme priorities, from cost reduction strategies and data compliance to duty of care responsibilities and global, regional or national fulfilment.”

Delta Air Lines will become the first airline to offer free WhatsApp messaging, enabling its customers to stay fully connected with friends whether on the ground or in the air.

Access to Facebook Messenger and iMessage will also be available when the service launches on October 1st.

Tim Mapes, Delta chief marketing officer, said: “Even the most seasoned travellers can find themselves mid-air and caught out by a last-minute cancellation or arrangement.

“Rather than having to count down the hours until landing, Delta customers can continue socialising or working with the tap of a smartphone and enjoy peace of mind at every stage of the flight.”



Free messaging will be available on all Gogo-enabled Delta flights, which includes all aircraft with two or more cabins, and will be accessible through Delta’s Wi-Fi portal page, which can be accessed in-flight by clicking here.

This latest enhancement is part of Delta’s multi-billion dollar investment in the customer experience; in addition to mobile messaging, Delta continues to expand high-speed Wi-Fi, seat-back entertainment screens and free entertainment to give travellers more choice and flexibility in how to spend their time from take-off to touchdown.

Trainline has launched the UK’s first ever train ticket price predictor.

Available in the Trainline app from today, Price Prediction allows train travellers to look into the future and see when advance ticket prices are set to increase over time.

Trainline customers currently save an average of 44 per cent on advance fares, however billions of price prediction data points show that if customers bought their ticket on the day they first searched for their journey, they would save an average of 49 per cent.

Trainline argues they could save more by booking even earlier.

Price Prediction uses billions of data points to predict when advance train tickets are set to increase in price over time, helping travellers to budget for their next trip more effectively.



The new tool gives customers an at-a-glance snapshot of all the opportunities to save money when buying advance tickets in the months and days leading up to travel.

Advance rail ticket pricing is complex, and customers can often miss opportunities to save.

Most train companies release advance tickets around 12 weeks before the day of travel, and once available to buy, they almost always increase in price as the day of travel approaches, so delaying purchase can be costly.

Price Prediction gives complete transparency on the price of advance tickets, helping customers choose the best price for their journey.

Jon Moore, chief product officer at Trainline, said: “Our data scientists have used historical pricing trends from billions of customer journey searches to predict when the price of an advance ticket will expire.

“We now share this information in our app to allow our customers to get the best price possible for their journey.

“We’re introducing more advanced machine learning every day so naturally our predictions will get increasingly accurate.

“Our mission is to make train travel as simple as possible and price prediction is the first in a long line of predictive features we have planned to help customers save time and money.”

The new tool is the latest in a series of smart features for travellers in the Trainline App and follows the launch of BusyBot which uses crowdsourced data to identify the quietest parts of the train and help customers find a seat.

Mobile tickets help customers save time queuing to collect at the station and real-time travel information including platform numbers and journey/delay information allows travellers to be in complete control of their journey, on-the go.

Saturday, 19 August 2017 00:00

Digital Keys roll out at The Waldorf Hilton

Guests to The Waldorf Hilton will be able to turn their phone into a room key later this month.

The Digital Key will provide Hilton Honors members with more choice and control over their travel experience.

After having their Digital Key enabled at front desk, guests will then be able to access their room, as well as any other area of the hotel that requires guest access, directly via the Hilton Honors app on their smartphone.

The mobile-enabled room key technology follows the rollout of digital check-in and room selection - still the industry’s first-and-only tool that lets guests select the exact room based on the hotel layout and its outside surroundings.

Digital Key enables Hilton Honors members to simply and securely open the door of their room at the touch of a button available through the award-winning Hilton Honors app.



“We previously invested $550 million in global technology infrastructure to lay the foundations which have enabled us to bring to market, at scale, the digital tools we have today,” said Geraldine Calpin, chief marketing officer, Hilton.

“We know that our guests are looking for more choice and control over their entire travel journey and through digital tools such as Digital Key and digital check-in with room selection, we are giving guests the ability to personalise their stay at every stage, wherever they are in the world.”

Activated the day before arrival, Hilton Honors members who book directly with Hilton can select their desired room on their smartphone using digital check-in and will be asked if they’d like a Digital Key during their stay.

On the day of arrival and once their room is ready, they will receive a notification via the app and will need to pass by the front desk to get their Digital Key enabled before heading to their room.

When the guest approaches their hotel room, they can simply press the virtual “unlock” button on the app to unlock the door.

Guy Hilton, general manager, The Waldorf Hilton, added: “Hilton’s strategic direction is about providing a better experience for guests.

“The Digital Key is designed to complement our team members’ ability to provide unforgettable service and hospitality; whether that’s in person or now digitally.

“Every guest will have their own preference and it’s certainly not a case of moving away from face-to-face interaction, which is still very important.

“It’s about evolving and bringing a physical experience to the digital world. We’re creating a more seamless process for our guests; one that is convenient and secure.”

The UK launch follows a successful rollout of Digital Key in the US and Canada, enabling guests to unlock doors at 1,700 hotels across the world.

Since this technology launched, guests have opened more than 11 million doors and the Hilton Honors App has been downloaded once every eight seconds.

Air France is testing an immersive entertainment system with virtual reality headsets that allow passengers to enjoy 3D and 2D programmes during flights.

The system has been tested on board return Paris-Charles de Gaulle-St. Martin flights.

Customers travelling in Business class on board the A340 operating this route can try this new form of in-flight entertainment for themselves.

Four headsets are offered on board with a selection of some forty films and series.

Air France is conducting the trial run in partnership with the start-up SkyLights.

At the end of the test period, Air France has said that the new system may be rolled out to other flights.

All 298 rooms are equipped with complimentary Handy Phone service, ensuring 24-hour connectivity and convenience, as well providing free international calls to selected countries (including the United States) and unlimited calls in the UK.

Guests can also enjoy unlimited internet access with 3G data; with the Handy Phone also offering social media networking, destination-specific content, exclusive hotel offers and promotions, comprehensive city guides and recommended shops, bars, restaurants and places to visit.

Hotels can also provide unique services that answers travellers needs and wants.

Benefits for the hotel include call-to-action features, in-depth guest analytics, seamless integration with PMS networks and an integrated TripAdvisor guest feedback system.

All designed to elevate the guest experience and unlock unexplored opportunities for the intrepid hotelier.



Guy Hilton, general manager, The Waldorf Hilton said: “Handy Phones are the ideal companion for the modern traveller.

“At the Waldorf Hilton, we are always looking at ways of going beyond providing the best service possible for our guests.

“Now they can reserve a trip, book theatre tickets and discover more of the city from the comfort of their room or while they are out and about outside of the hotel.

“Without doubt it helps us to enhance the guest experience.

Handy (which can be used outside of the hotel) also comes equipped with fully adjustable language selection, allowing hotel guests to enjoy the full breadth of the phone’s capabilities regardless of their linguistic preferences.

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