Don’t give up on Google Glass in travel: Schiphol Airport launches year-long trial

It was only two years ago that we were wondering if Google Glass was to be the next big thing in travel. And while Google Glass may be on the outs with mainstream consumers, the technology is still being trialed for industrial applications — such as in travel, where the constant data stream lends itself well to Glass’ heads-up display.

Schiphol Airport is the latest organization to jump on the “test it and see” bandwagon.

And despite the fact that the technology in its current form is dead to consumers, the airport truly seems excited to be using it. The airport created an app that allows for a Glass wearer to quickly call up flight information according to the gate, rather than having to call in to dispatch.

In the future, the airport hopes to add a distance-measuring feature as well, which would allow staff to quickly measure the distance between taxiway barriers rather than measuring manually.

Schiphol made a video showing how Glass was being deployed around the airport and on the tarmac, being used to both track the passenger’s journey through the terminal and for getting information to operations folks on the ground.

Certainly, the airport’s claims of innovation through its usage of Glass are a tad belated. Nonetheless, if the technology succeeds at speeding work on the ground by freeing up resources previously devoted to calling up information, that would be a tremendous gain in efficiency. Also, learning about the passenger journey could also be helpful, as long as that information is translated into action.

Schiphol’s trial deployment of Google Glass follows recent Glass experiments at attractions such as museums and airlines such as Virgin, which suggest that the technology will doubtlessly carve out a niche for itself in specialized information-rich environments.

But just like the Segway before it — which has now been relegated to uses such as police and slightly ridiculous city tours — Glass is now on institutional ice. That’s not to say the technology won’t continue to have some ideal applications in travel, just as the Segway still does. If the technology continues to be deployed and tested within larger organizations, Google might still have a winner that can be tweaked and iterated upon for future mainstream versions.

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Nick Vivion

About the Writer :: Nick Vivion

Nick helps brands blog better at Ghost Works, a boutique blog management service. Nick was previously the Director of Content for tnooz, where he oversaw the editorial and commercial content as well as producing/hosting tnoozLIVE.



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