Unisys aims to ease the travel experience for pets and their humans

Anyone who has ever committed a pet to the cargo hold of a plane knows the anxiety of wondering whether MollyPup or Princess Kitty is doing all right down there.

Now, thanks to artificial intelligence and the Internet of Things, Unisys Corp. has found a way to take some of the stress out of the trip for both owner and pet.

Through a new solution called Digi-Pet, owners can use a smartphone or other connected device to monitor a pet’s well-being – temperature, oxygen levels, vibration, etc. – via sensors attached to its kennel or carry case. The sensors will send out an alert if something doesn’t seem right.

Using an app, owners also can subscribe to live video streaming, photos and voice exchanges. Think of it as FaceTime for animals, a feature that is likely to calm the nerves of both two- and four-legged fliers.

Digi-Pet is part of Unisys’ Digistics suite of solutions for cargo carriers.

The 20 carriers that subscribe to the Digistics service transport about 180,000 animals each year.

Digi-Pet helps airlines comply with IATA’s Live Animals Regulations, the worldwide standard for transporting live animals.

The regulations aim to ensure all animals are transported safely and humanely by monitoring the pet’s environmental conditions from the point of dropoff to delivery to the final destination.

Unisys said it was inspired to launch the service by the Unisys Cargo User Group, made up of the airlines that use other Unisys cargo services.

They meet twice a year to collaborate and advise Unisys what new services they would like to offer their customers and the technology needed to enable them.

Demand for air transportation for pets is growing, Unisys said.

In 2015, Qantas recorded a 20% increase year over year in the number of pets being transported by planes.

The user group told Unisys that they wanted a service that used new technology that would provide a premium pet travel service with less stress for both pet and human.

The service was announced in late February, and Unisys expects to have news on airlines that have signed on shortly. It advised pet owners to contact the airline passenger division of their departure airport to find out whether an airline offers the service.

Digi-Pet from Unisys Corp on Vimeo.

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Michele McDonald

About the Writer :: Michele McDonald

Michele McDonald is a senior editor at tnooz. She has worked as a journalist covering the travel industry for more than two decades. She is a former managing editor of Travel Weekly (US) and former editor-in-chief of Travel Distribution Report. In 2002, she founded Travel Technology Update, a newsletter for distribution professionals. She remains editor and publisher of Travel Technology Update. She also contributes to Air Transport World.



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