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"iPhone X. This really is the future…” of Travel

Yes good spot, we have taken Tim Cook’s words and twisted them a bit. But after the whirlwind of announcements on Tuesday night at the Apple Event we felt it was the best way to describe the impact iPhone X (10) and iOS11 is going to have on the travel industry. To quote Apple again (the old Steve Jobs days) “This changes everything”.

From paying for your flight with facial recognition to selecting paid baggage using AR, we sum up how Tuesday night’s announcements will impact the future of travel. Make a note of September 19th 2017 in your calendars, the future starts then!

1. Your face is now your password 
The end is nigh for the likes of 1Password, Last Pass et al and if you’re still keeping your passwords locked up securely (ahem) in the notes app on your iPhone, then worry no more. With Face ID you’ll never have to remember your easyJet password again.

face id set up - blog size.jpgSource: macrumors.com 

2. Paper boarding passes, never heard of them?
The number one fear of the millennial traveller...running out of power before reaching the gate with their mobile boarding passes.  Now with Apple getting its sizable weight behind Qi wireless charging expect to see charging pads pop up anywhere & everywhere at airports and hotels worldwide. The days of finding a printer and getting a paper boarding pass 'just in case' are going to be SO 2017.

wireless charger - blog size.jpgSource: Apple

3. Check out with just a glance
As Apple said, “what could be more natural than a touch? A look” Remember the ‘old days’ when we used to frown at people at airport bars fumbling for change to pay at the till? Well we’ll be doing that same frown as they put their put fumbling thumb on their phone to pay for that extra legroom seat. Just look at your iPhone 8/8Plus/X you luddite!

Face ID - blog size.jpgSource: alphr.com 

4. I don’t think your augmented reality bag is going to fit in the overheads sir
When Tim Cook said “ARKit will become the biggest AR platform, literally overnight” at WWDC in June this year he wasn’t wrong, in fact it will be the night of September 19th. The combination of the power of the new iPhones plus ARKit opens up a world of travel possibilities… check your bag fits in the overhead lockers before you leave your house, see direction arrows in front of your face when navigating airport maps, read landmark descriptions as you walk round Barcelona... it’s the stuff of dreams!

bag ipad - blog size.jpgSource: YouTube 

5. “Hey Siri, leave my phone at home”
Arrive at the airport and realise you’ve forgotten your phone (and the Apple Wallet mobile boarding pass on it)? pah, that’s how they boarded a flight in the old days. With cellular and LTE coming to the Apple Watch Series 3 you can still get on that plane.

united apple watch - blog size.jpg

Source: blog.passkit.com 

6. Core NFC
After so many broken promises, Apple’s new Core NFC framework is finally going to take NFC to the masses. From tapping to pay for your coffee, to tapping to pay for fast track because the security queue is massive as you arrive at the airport, expect to see NFC change the real time and location aware travel experience of the (very near) future. Might be time to ditch that travel card...  

scan-nfc.jpgSource: iphone-ticker.de 

7. The App Store goes truly mobile first
In all the hyperbole of Tuesday evening no one noticed that Apple quietly removed the App Store section on iTunes in a cheeky little 12.7 update. It’s no longer possible to download apps on your PC or Mac and then sync them to your iPhone or iPad - but then again who has done that since 2012?

iTunes-appstore section.pngSource: applerss.com 

8. Apple Watch (finally) becomes a messaging game changer
The new cellular capabilities finally make the Apple Watch useful for travel brands to engage with travellers using their favourite messaging and chat apps right from their wrist. And In a very clear nod to the Chinese market (hello WeChat *waves*) these apps can now work without an iPhone in sight.

apple watch wechat - blog size.jpgSource: s3.amazonaws.com 

For all our updates from Tuesday night’s action as well as our extended views on what new opportunities iOS11 and the new iPhones will offer travel brands, check out our website.

Glenville Morris, Product Director - Digital Insights

Glenville has over 12 years experience as a digital & mobile professional in the travel, entertainment & retail sectors. Prior to joining Travelport Digital Glenville worked at easyJet across analytics, mobile marketing & was the product owner for easyJet mobile. At Travelport Digital Glenville heads up the Digital Insights team looking at market trends, operating system updates and how new mobile technologies will affect the travel industry.

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