Multitouch solution improves traveller experience at Frankfurt Airport
Third largest European Airport informs and guides travellers in
real-time thanks to the new Interactive Airport Desk
Fraport AG, the operator of Frankfurt Airport, is now making full use of Interactive Airport Desks based on the integrated polytouch® solution from Pyramid Computer GmbH. A popular feature in consumer applications, multi-touch systems are now increasingly used in commercial and industrial settings.
With the installation of polytouch interactive display solutions in Frankfurt Airport, users have access to real-time information on flights and directions, in addition to detailed shopping, dining and service opportunities. The guidance system and information terminal, which has an integrated computer and scanning unit, was installed by Offenbach, Germany-based COSALUX GmbH.
The installation provides several advantages for travellers, retailers and the airport authority. For travellers, customer-specific and personalised information drawn from six guidance databases in real time can be easily retrieved from any of the Interactive Airport Desks. Users simply scan their paper flight ticket or the ticket QR code displayed on their smartphone to receive travel information regarding itinerary changes, flight delays and gate changes, in addition to direct guidance to their departure gate.
A key practical benefit of the personalised information transfer is the automatic language detection feature, whereby passengers are automatically greeted and receive relevant information in their own language. As the third largest Airport in Europe and one of the busiest international connecting points for long haul flights, travelling passengers will benefit from this streamlined service, which puts the convenience of the traveller at the forefront.
The software embedded in the solution was made by infsoft - a specialist in indoor navigation and positioning system services. It is based on an existing digital 2D/3D map that the company created previously for the Frankfurt Airport app, which digitally covers an area of over one million square meters, some 1,000 points of interest and 30 kilometres of routes. The map has now been fully revised and modified to make the best out of this new exciting application.
Aside from the immediate traveller benefits, each 46-inch interactive display – offering maximum display brilliance and best available touch precision for optimised and intuitive user experience – also creates opportunities for digital signage and retail advertising.
"The Interactive Airport Desk, or I-AID, is more than just a way finding system," explains Alexander Coelius, CEO of COSALUX GmbH. " In addition to maps and positioning, the system provides localised information and offers/promotions from restaurants and shops which are updated daily.”
“In using the Interactive Airport Desks, travellers benefit from information, offers and promotions relevant to them,” continues Coelius. “Users can also type in any search terms they wish, such as ‘coffee’ or ‘newspapers’, offering maximum convenience and efficiency in the unknown transient location that is the airport terminal.”
The shops within the terminal also benefit in the form of increased customer flow and increased revenue thanks to special offers, promotions and further information displayed on the Interactive Airport Desks.
“The Interactive Airport Desks are part of the Fraport AG digitisation strategy of providing personalised services and information for the travelling process,” continued Coelius. “it improves customer service drastically by offering travellers an easy to use personalised information desk. What’s more, the desk allows Fraport AG to gather quality data on users of the devices, which can then be passed on to retailers looking to target specific consumer groups.”
polytouch’s modular design enables seamless integration of peripherals such as printers, scanners and payment devices. Based on projected capacitive touch (PCT) technology that allows surface-flush installation, polytouch is highly user-friendly and offers numerous customised solutions possibilities.
“There are clear market trends towards new forms of interaction, applications with multiple points of contact and multi-user interactions,” commented Coelius. “Demand for integrated multi-touch system solutions is growing and there is a diverse array of applications distinctly focused on real-time content, with user satisfaction and utility a top priority. Be it product searches, navigation or production process monitoring, operation must be simple and fast.”
Over the coming months, Frankfurt Airport is set to be on the cutting edge of linking online shops with bricks-and-mortar stores. When pilot operation is complete, a double-digit number of additional Interactive Airport Desks will be installed at central points. In the meantime, COSALUX is working on getting the system to interface with a mobile app that provides coupons, among other things, and is intelligently linked to points/awards schemes by referencing passengers' scanned-in personal data. Customer groups can also be clustered together based on gender and age data to deliver highly targeted advertising to specific audiences.
“polytouch fulfils all the demands and requirements originally outlined by Fraport AG. Perhaps most importantly, this solution offers travellers a revolutionary user experience reflecting recent trends and developments in consumer technology.”