Heathrow Airport launches Amazon Alexa skill
With 40 per cent of UK households expected to own a voice-controlled smart device by the end of 2018, Heathrow Airport has become the first UK airport to announce its very own skill on the market’s most popular…
ALEXA, OPEN HEATHROW: The voice-controlled device can now give you flight information on UK flights
London Heathrow Airport has become the first in the UK to launch an Amazon Alexa skill. It partnered with The Voyage Team, part of the Piksel tech solutions group, to develop the software on the voice-controlled smart device.
The software will give Heathrow customers the opportunity to ask Alexa for live flight status information, gate updates and details on arrivals and departures.
Working with Europe’s largest hub airport, the joint project team overcame the challenge of enabling users of Alexa devices to access information on around 1,300 aircraft movements a day. With over 84 airlines, Heathrow’s new Skill needed to understand queries related to multiple carriers and interpret alphanumeric codes.
The Skill draws on the data within Heathrow’s own flight information data hub, which collates all flight schedule information. Travellers will now be able to use Alexa alongside the Heathrow website and mobile application to access consistent flight data 24 hours a day.
Stephen Glenfield, Senior Digital Manager at Heathrow, said: “Delivering detailed flight information directly to customers within their homes is another fantastic milestone in improving our digital experience. Launching the first airport-specific Alexa Skill in the UK ensures easy access to the latest flight information, helping passengers to plan their journey more effectively and improve their experience from start to finish”
Dave Wood, Client Director at The Voyage Team, a Piksel Company, said: “We have worked with Heathrow since 2005 and have a shared focus on providing the best experience for Heathrow customers. Alexa is an exciting new frontier in customer service, and by adding an Alexa Skill, Heathrow is ensuring that it is serving technology-savvy customers and is ready for the growing trend in voice based services.”
The Skill is available in the Amazon Skill store now, more information is available here.
The Amazon Echo is a smart device with a range of capabilities. It is voice-controlled through Alexa, the personal assistant that has become synonymous with the Echo brand, and internet-connected. A library of skills are activated from the smartphone of the user. These can range from playing music to calling a taxi and ordering food. In June 2017, a survey conducted by Radiocentre found that nine per cent of UK households owned the device. Extrapolating into 2018, the same survey predicted that this year 40 per cent of households would have a voice-controlled smart device.