Airline passengers might get the sense these days that their flight attendants seem to know something about them. Well, they do: The Nokia Lumia 1520 “phablets” that were distributed last year to Delta’s 22,000 flight attendants have been upgraded with the addition of Delta’s Guest Service Tool — an application that lets the attendants know a bit about their customers on each flight, and help them out when necessary.
“Having technology at their fingertips to identify and greet customers by name, highlight a customer’s (SkyMiles) Medallion status, address disruptions in their travel in real-time as well as a host of other opportunities means the world’s finest flight attendants can provide an even more exceptional customer experience,” said Allison Ausband, the airline’s senior vp-inflight service. Eventually, flight attendants should also be able to use the device to tell a passenger about the status of their connecting flight and gate information in real time.
The Delta phablets were initially used mainly for in-flight sales transactions. In another enhancement effective this week, the flight attendant Lumias were also loaded with Delta’s On-Board Manual and Announcement Handbook, which used to be an actual 500-page book.
Delta is one of several major carriers empowering flight attendants with new passenger-related technology and data tools. United’s pilots got iPads for cockpit use, but this spring the airline started handing out the new iPhone 6 Plus to its 23,000 mainline flight attendants- with instructions to congratulate those at or near a MileagePlus milestone, or to say “Happy Birthday” to passengers on their special day, which some saw as kinda creepy.
American Airlines last fall issued Samsung tablets to its flight attendants for handling many of the same tasks that Delta’s cabin crew can now take on.
And JetBlue’s flight attendants are using the iPad Mini, loaded with a new In-Flight Service Assistant program that handles many of the tasks mentioned above.
What other kinds of passenger information can flight attendants access through their tablets, or might they be able to call up soon as the interactive database grows? Thepointsguy.com earlier this year published a flight attendant’s inside account that answers that question.
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