Bold New Ideas Take Flight at FTE Global 2021

For the last several years, the air travel industry has been focused on creating a seamless “curb-to-gate” passenger experience at the airport. To that end, many stakeholders in aviation have had visions of touchless biometric technology that allows a customer to drop a bag at the curb, check-in, pass security and board the plane without ever having to use a paper document.

This year, at the Future Travel Experience | Redefining the air passenger experience conference and exhibition, we celebrated the future everyone has been talking about because it has arrived. Held at the Aria Resort and Casino in Las Vegas, December 7 – 9, we were energized to meet our colleagues from around the world face-to-face at the show. During our time with experts in aviation, we discussed strategies to transform the passenger experience and underscored our collaborative efforts to face industry disruptions with advanced identity management solutions.

AIRPORT OF THE FUTURE IS NOW

Following the show theme, “New Approaches for a New World,” we introduced the NEC Biometrics & Digital Identity Summit that featured a joint keynote, case studies and a panel discussion.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) participated in a joint keynote session that talked extensively about the collaborative work that TSA and CBP did to cut through bureaucratic “red tape” and get technology into the field as quickly, safely and efficiently as possible.

Our case study spotlighted the partnership with Star Alliance, Lufthansa and SITA to uncover how Star Alliance and NEC’s biometric identification platform improved the customer experience for frequent flyers at airports around the world. Click here to see the entire panel discussion.

The panel discussion included key representatives from Delta, TSA, Mastercard, Port of Seattle and ID2020. It revealed how to successfully collaborate, facilitate and scale new digital identity and biometric efforts on a global level.

Finally, the summit concluded with a virtual presentation from Japan Airlines. They shared insight into how facial recognition technology is powering experiences at airports and in stadiums in Asia.

See how NEC I:Delight Enables Travelers to Use a Digital ID to Personalize Their Travel Experience.

NEW APPROACHES FOR A NEW WORLD

On the show floor, the NEC I:Delight platform was highlighted with the help of our partners at SITA, Tascent and Smith Detection. To create a seamless journey throughout our booth, we showcased the NEC I:Delight platform running on SITA Smart Path. By demonstrating this technology, we were able to take attendees through a seamless journey on the show floor, highlighting the simplicity and security of managing their Digital ID. Using this application, travelers can expect shorter lines, faster identification, touchless services and a personalized customer experience during their journey.

Check out our photo gallery and learn more about the ways NEC and our partners take customer experience to new heights with aviation innovation on one platform.

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NEC, Star Alliance and SITA Team Up to Accelerate Seamless, Touchless Travel

NEC Corporation of America, Star Alliance and SITA are accelerating the future of touchless travel through a recent partnership agreement. Coming soon, loyalty customers of Star Alliance member airlines will be able to use their unique Digital ID across participating airlines and airports.

Star Alliance Biometrics, powered by NEC I:Delight, is an opt-in service that allows loyalty customers to create a unique Digital ID to unlock a personalized, touchless travel experience from reservation to destination. By connecting Star Alliance Biometrics to SITA’s Smart Path solution, the platform will be able to use SITA’s shared airport infrastructure already available in more than 460 airports.

NEC I:Delight platform, which is currently in use by Star Alliance member airlines at several airports in Europe, can be easily integrated with SITA Smart Path. The opt-in solution can quickly identify passengers with a high degree of accuracy, even when face masks or PPE are present.

Interested in learning more about this teaming agreement? You can read the full press release here.

You can also get a first-hand look into how Star Alliance Biometrics, powered by NEC I:Delight, is transforming the customer experience by watching this short video.

For more information about NEC’s aviation solutions, visit necam.com/aviation or complete the form below to schedule a virtual tour to see how we are refining the travel experience.

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Take a journey with us by accessing our 360 degree photo realistic tour in simulated real-world environments in Aviation, Federal Government, Healthcare and Retail.

Future Ready Travel Using a Digital ID

NEC and Star Alliance are redefining the travel experience with the use of a unique Digital ID that can provide a seamless customer experience from reservation to destination. Star Alliance Biometrics, powered by NEC I:Delight, allows frequent flyers to opt-in to the application and unlock access to a personalized, touchless travel experience.

Launched in November 2020, Lufthansa and SWISS International loyalty customers now have a quicker, more seamless path through airports in Frankfurt and Munich, Germany. In time, Star Alliance plans to make the service available to all 26 of its member airlines and their customers.

How Does Star Alliance Biometrics Work?

Frequent flyers create a secure, biometric-enabled Digital ID in just a few easy steps. First, simply download the airline’s app from the Apple Store or Google Play, then opt-in to the platform by scanning your passport or government issued ID and snapping a selfie. Once the profile is complete, travelers can select exactly which airlines and airports they allow to access their designated information. Travelers also choose how to use, or share, their Digital ID throughout their travel journey.

At the airport, passengers can check-in for a flight, drop off luggage, and board the plane using their Digital ID. The authentication process is fast and intuitive, by quickly verifying passenger information against flight manifest data and producing a prompt for the traveler to continue seamlessly through his or her journey. In the future, passengers will be able to enjoy additional services using their Digital ID, such as, passing through security checkpoints, accessing VIP lounges, and shopping at retail stores.

What is NEC I:Delight?

NEC I:Delight is a highly secure and scalable digital identity management platform that effortlessly brings touchless experiences to countless use cases. It provides a unified experience for a variety of services and transactions by using a unique, multi-factor Digital ID based on biometric authentication and AI technology. The platform streamlines both physical and digital identities into a secure, privacy-driven ecosystem for a seamless, secure, more personalized, and intuitive customer experience.

To see how Star Alliance Biometrics, powered by NEC I:Delight, is transforming the customer experience, take a minute to watch this short video.

For more information about NEC’s aviation solutions, visit necam.com/aviation or complete the form below to schedule a virtual tour to see how we are refining the travel experience. Click here to book your appointment today!

Now, touchless travel can be achieved with single, secure Digital ID.

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Take a journey with us by accessing our 360 degree photo realistic tour in simulated real-world environments in Aviation, Federal Government, Healthcare and Retail.

Digital ID is Taking Travel to New Heights

As digital coupons and receipts are replacing typical “wallet clutter,” Digital IDs are replacing the way people validate their identity.

Many travelers are already opting-in to the use of Digital IDs to speed their way through bag check, security verification and boarding processes. When a Digital ID is created, travelers can select trip-specific choices that expire when the trip is complete – just like digital boarding passes. If the traveler consents to use the Digital ID for transactions like retail or hospitality, those authorizations will remain active in their profile until the traveler chooses to disable it. The Digital ID is entirely under the owner’s control at all times.

The NEC Aviation team has created an eBook that explains the digital transformation taking place in commercial air travel using a Digital ID.

Below is a three-page preview of our eBook. Click here to learn more or fill out the form below to download the entire eBook.

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Star Alliance Biometrics streamlines boarding process with NEC I:Delight identity management platform

Star Alliance Biometrics launched last month, giving loyalty customers of the world’s largest global airline alliance a quicker, cleaner path through airports in Frankfurt and Munich, Germany. Lufthansa and SWISS International are the first airlines to implement Star Alliance Biometrics. In time, Star Alliance plans to make the service available to all 26 of its member airlines. NEC is proud to be the technology partner powering the new service with the NEC I:Delight identity platform software.

Star Alliance has a strong reputation for innovation in the airline industry. Upholding its commitment to listen to customer expectations and elevate the customer experience with cutting-edge solutions, Star Alliance decided two years ago to leverage NEC’s biometric and identity management platform to accelerate airport processes and alleviate bottlenecks.

That forward-thinking objective positioned Star Alliance as a problem-solving leader during the current pandemic, to use contactless biometrics to create hygienic, touchless checkpoints. Travelers who opt-in to use the Star Alliance Biometrics service simply check-in at each kiosk with a selfie rather than handling physical documents face-to-face with airport personnel.

As Star Alliance CEO Jeffrey Goh recently stated in a joint press release with Lufthansa Group, “Biometrics solutions are important as we move forward for the industry and for airports. First and foremost, it will offer a seamless customer experience. Second, it will offer the hygiene safety experience that customers are expecting coming out of the coronavirus crisis. But importantly, for many, many airports, infrastructural constraints have been a problem. And biometrics solutions will take away those infrastructural concerns.”

Register once, use often

As the Star Alliance Biometrics service expands over time, it will be interoperable among participating airlines and airports. As Alliance members adopt the technology and as air travel rebounds for the “next normal,” customers will be able to move seamlessly across the growing global network with a single secure digital ID.

Loyalty program members may opt-in using an app to scan their passports and snap a selfie. NEC technology validates the authenticity of the passport and the traveler’s biometrics to prevent spoofing or identity theft. NEC I:Delight is developed with privacy in mind, and this commitment to customer security and privacy was a key factor in Star Alliance’s decision to develop its platform with NEC.

Participants control their digital ID by selecting the partners who may access it. At the airport, authentication is intuitive in any language: Passengers face an integrated camera in a kiosk at the security zone and boarding gate.  In the blink of an eye, the identity platform checks passengers against the saved flight manifest data, quickly producing a prompt for the traveler to continue through the checkpoint or to check-in with security or an airline agent.

The NEC I:Delight platform’s capabilities can also be extended to assist with Wayfinding in airports and enable Face Pay for purchases at duty free stores. Face Pay uses the same NEC protections for secure access to a participant’s account. Beyond the airport, the entire travel ecosystem can be enhanced with I:Delight by implementing face recognition in hospitality, retail, entertainment, car rental and other transportation.

Biometrics in the face of COVID

Face coverings create a challenge for many face recognition algorithms. Some masks cover more than half of a face, and this pandemic has seen a surge of new face mask styles, textures and patterns. NEC continually invests in improving its biometric algorithm – already the industry’s fastest and most accurate – and NEC has risen to the challenge.

The NEC face matching algorithm has proven its accuracy even with a face mask. Identity verification can occur in as little as 1.5 seconds –much faster and more accurate than human analysis with the face mask lowered.

NEC’s commitment to innovation over its long history and our consistent top ratings across biometric solutions led Star Alliance to choose NEC as the technology partner for its biometrics platform. CEO Jeffrey Goh says Star Alliance wanted a reliable partner that could give airline members confidence that they will continue to have secure and forward-thinking solutions that support the alliance’s reputation as a technology leader.

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