Friday, 21 September 2018

Delta to launch first biometric terminal in the U.S.

Delta to launch first biometric terminal in the U.S.
One look and you are on your way.

In a partnership announced today between the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL) the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) and Delta Air Lines confirmed they are launching the first biometric terminal in the United States at Maynard H. Jackson International Terminal (Terminal F) in Atlanta. 

This new development which starts later this year will give passengers flying directly to an international destination the choice of using facial recognition technology from curb to gate, designed to transform a customers journey with a seamless travel experience through the airport, or following the normal procedures.

This optional, end-to-end Delta Biometrics experience includes using facial recognition technology to:
Check in at the self-service kiosks in the lobby
Drop checked baggage at the counters in the lobby
Serve as identification at the TSA checkpoint
Board a flight at any gate in Terminal F
And, go through CBP processing for international travellers arriving into the U.S.
Travelling on partner airlines Aeromexico, Air France-KLM or Virgin Atlantic Airways out of Terminal F? Those customers are eligible to use this technology too — another benefit of Delta’s unmatched global network of partnerships.

“Launching the first biometric terminal in the US. at the world’s busiest airport means we’re bringing the future of flying to customers travelling around the globe. Customers have an expectation that experiences along their journey are easy and happen seamlessly — that’s what we’re aiming for by launching this technology across airport touch points.” said Gil West, Delta Air Lines COO.

The Trump supporting airline claims that its staff have had an input in the move of facial recognition from testing to this full-scale launch. Delta employees gave feedback on a number of issues from the best camera angle for a successful scan to an added device enhancement that better facilitates face-to-face interactions with customers. Based on initial testing, the facial recognition option not only saves up to nine minutes per flight but supposedly allows staff to have more meaningful interactions with customers. 

“This is the latest example of Delta’s investment in, and partnership with, the world’s busiest and most efficient airport. We are looking forward to bringing the future of travel to life with Delta, CBP and TSA,” said Balram Bheodari, interim General Manager, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport.

Some people are not as enthusiastic about the new procedures, a leading European think tank on aviation safety dismissed the current technology as rather unreliable. They say recent tests showed the system only worked 70% of the time and in the 30% of the unsuccessful times passengers would have to re-queue, adding at least six minutes more to their throughput.