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Archive for the ‘Trends’ Category

Cool Travel Tech Gadgets

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Smart Luggage

CX-1 is at the top of the class. Introduced by ForwardX, this high-tech suitcase features facial recognition software and a wristband equipped with GPS. Put the two together and the luggage can follow you around through the airport, to the taxi stand, or anywhere else a suitcase can roll.

If someone tries to snatch the bag, the wristband is designed to alert you while helping you track the thief. Not physically having to lug a heavy suitcase through the airport is reason enough to love this new travel technology.

Recording Sunglasses

Spectacles sunglasses feature functional sunglasses with a small video recorder built into the frame. The recorder is designed to record 10-second snaps of your day, which are then sent to your smartphone using the Snapchat app. The snaps are relegated to Snapchat Memories, keeping a database of your most memorable moments.

The Mavic Pro travel drone

This drone features smartphone control, GPS, a 4K camera and video recorder, 11 flight modes, and nearly 30 minutes of flying time.

You can fly the drone up to a distance of 4.3 miles, recording video or snapping photos along the way. It even has tripod and selfie settings, letting you capture miles-wide moments of your travel with minimal effort. This drone elevates travel photography and video to a whole new level, both literally and figuratively.

Hi-Tech Hotel Features

Voice-activated devices are already in place at Acme Hotel in Chicago, letting travelers communicate with staff and glean information using an Amazon Echo device in the room. Instead of calling the front desk or heading to the lobby, all you need to do is ask Alexa about morning coffee hours, weather conditions, or setting a wake-up alarm.

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is another high-tech option hitting the industry, with an automated form of intelligence expected to replace human interactions in certain areas, like customer service. AI-equipped chatbots would be able to answer general questions and provide basic support faster, more conveniently, and 24 hours a day.

 

 

 

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Travel Trends & Technology

Expedia’s 2018 Travel Tech Trends and Industry Opportunities report, reveals that new technologies are seeing swift uptake from consumers, driven by consumers’ growing digital impatience and expectation for instant responses, answers and solutions to their queries and purchasing requests.

Artificial intelligence (AI)

AI makes it possible for machines to learn from experience, adjust to new inputs, mimic human behavior and complete tasks.

This can be found in some of the simplest, daily things such as Chatbots, which are offshoots of AI. Chatbot systems on their websites to help relieve the load on its hotlines. With Chatbots, time-starved (or impatient) travelers can get their queries across and expect a quicker response than, say, sending through an e-mail.

Companies that use it:

  • Air New Zealand (named Oscar)
  • AirAsia
  • Finnair (named Finn)
  • Expedia
  • Allora (named Dorothy)
  • Skyscann

In February this year, Japanese tour firm First Airlines rolled out a one-of-a-kind service that allows passengers to virtually visit destinations in a short two-hour “flight,” that would otherwise take upwards of 10 hours.

Passengers just needed to be strapped into a simulator to enjoy “traveling” to their destination in the comfort of first and business class cabins. The experience included everything that one would experience on an actual flight such as a safety announcement by the cabin crew and a four-course fine-dining in-flight meal.

Upon “arrival,” travelers will then be given high-tech virtual reality headsets to put on to explore their destination’s sites.

Other travel companies, such as Thomas Cook, Flight Centre, and Virgin Holidays are also using VR in-store to promote destinations they’re selling by giving immersive tours.

Renowned multinational hospitality company Shangri-La Hotels was perhaps the first if not one of the first hotel group to use VR across all its global sales offices to promote its properties worldwide.

Even the aforementioned Niantic-developed PokemonGO was used by tourism authorities worldwide to promote their destinations.

 

Translation: We have confirmed that the frequency to encounter Lapras has been increased in the coastal area of Iwate, Miyagi, and Fukushima prefecture. Apparently, it will continue until 23 Nov. It’s time to travel there where you can experience Tohoku district! We believe that you can find a lot of awesome things besides PokemonGO.

Blockchain

According to industry experts, emerging technology blockchain is the next major disruptor to the travel industry. And by the looks of how quickly companies are adopting cryptocurrencies, that seems to be true.

In February this year, Brisbane Airport, one of Australia’s biggest airports, announced it struck a game-changing deal with cryptocurrency travel firm TravelbyBit. The airport will become the world’s first airport to accept Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies as a legitimate currency.

 

Southeast Asian travel firm Smiling Albino has also started acknowledging Bitcoin installments for all treks to Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos, and Myanmar. The organization said it was “a more productive approach to pay for an excursion.”

Artificial Intelligence(AI) & Customer Service

 

375 Million May Be Hunting For Employment When Automation Kicks In

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By 2030 up to 30% of the hours worked globally could be automated. According to a new report by the McKinsey Global Institute  researchers estimate that between 400 million and 800 million people could find themselves displaced by automation and in need of new jobs, depending on how quickly new technologies are adopted. Of this group, as many as 375 million people—about 14% of the global workforce—may need to completely switch occupational categories and learn a new set of skills to find work.

Number of workers needing to find new jobs due to automation

 

NASA Engineer Building Flying Cars For Uber

Uber brings in NASA engineer to build flying cars

Uber recently announced that NASA engineer Mark Moore will be spearheading its plans for an on-demand aviation service, known as Uber Elevate. Credit: Ube

To expand their ride-sharing services to the skies, Uber recently hired NASA aerospace engineer Mark D. Moore to spearhead Uber Elevate. For 30 years, Moore has worked for NASA, researching advanced aircraft and technologies and vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) applications. 

As skyscrapers allowed cities to use limited land more efficiently, urban air transportation will use three-dimensional airspace to alleviate transportation congestion on the ground. A network of small, electric aircraft that take off and land vertically (called VTOL aircraft for Vertical Take-off and Landing, and pronounced vee-tol), will enable rapid, reliable transportation between suburbs and cities and, ultimately, within cities.

Such a plan would not only rely on VTOL network to bypass the usual infrastructure of roads, railways, bridges and tunnels, but would also call for the repurposing of parts of the urban landscape. Uber’s plan calls for transforming the tops of parking garages, existing helipads, and unused land surrounding highway interchanges to create a network of “vertiports” and “versistops”, complete with charging stations for their vehicles.
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Uber flying taxi rendering

 

Video Game Designers Are Getting Better At Creating Hair For Black Characters

 

This year’s E3 black character’s hair is seen as refreshing. io9‘s Evan Narcisse says in his essay for anthology State of PlayAs a black gamer, I’ve also noticed these problems, particularly for black women. A lot of black characters have permed, straight hair, or textures that aren’t quite right

 

Apple’s 1990 Sneakers Going For $30,000. Do You Own A Pair?

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apple sneakers

When Apple launched its first color desktop computer, in 1990, the tech giant also created a prototype pair of sneakers with its signature rainbow logo.

They were first sold to a lucky Apple employee some time in the mid-’90s, according to BitRebels.  They later sold for only $79 on eBay  back in 2007.

In the years that followed, the whereabouts of the shoes were unknown — until a friend of Leon Benrimon, director of modern and contemporary art at Heritage Auctions, found them at a garage sale in San Francisco.

Now, Heritage Auctions is auctioning off the pair at its Beverly Hills location. Bidding will begin at 11 am on June 11, and the sneakers are expected to go for at least $30,000. The starting bid will be $15,000. The Adidas sneakers, size 9 and a half, are made from the typical white leather material of the times. They feature Apple’s logo on the tongue and on the side. The soles are made from rubber that supposedly doesn’t leave skid marks.

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