Airports go mobile to improve operations.

 
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New York (AirGuide - Inside Air Travel) - Mon, Nov 2, 2015 At Dallas Fort Worth International Airport, thereas an app for a well a just about everything. To ease passengers on their way, and resolve problems that pop up more quickly, the world's fourth busiest airport (ranked by flights per day) has introduced over 40 mobile applications during the last two years. That means airport employees can find out that a parking garage is full, and then redirect passengers, simply by checking their mobile devices. And fliers can find the nearest gourmet cafA[c] - and whether they have enough time to eat there - by downloading an app. aWeare bigger than the island of Manhattan, from tip to tail, so the way we can be efficient is with mobility,aa says Stephen Shaffer, DFWas chief information officer. aThe vision and mission is aletas enable the employees to do their job anytime, anywhere.aa A survey released last week by SITA, an air transport communications and IT solutions company, found that globally, 91% of airports are planning to offer a mobile app to help passengers navigate their terminals, while 83% said they would use such a platform to push out real-time notifications regarding local traffic and wait times in line. But when it comes to mobile apps in the U.S. air travel space, it's airlines who have taken the lead. aThere is no doubt the airlines have quickly figured out their passengers were moving to smartphones, to pads, and the app was a way to give passengers that opportunity to book tickets, file complaints, (and) get updates,aa says Blaise Waguespack, who teaches airport marketing at the Daytona Beach, Fla. Campus of Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. Still, Waguespack says that many of the nationas biggest airports want to get on board. aIt is a discussion that is ongoing,aa he says. An airport app could steer fliers to shops, services and eateries, for instance. And apps can be particularly useful to airport workers. aYou think about the size of a DFW, and others of that size, like an LAX, (or) Orlando'' airport, Waguespack says. "As youare trying to help employees keep the physical plant up and (deal with) safety and risk issues, (apps) would be a great help.aa The massive rollout of apps at DFW has resulted in over 43,000 previously manual functions now being performed electronically, Shaffer says. An asset management mobile app, for instance, allows a worker who finds a broken light on a taxiway to open a repair ticket on...

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