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Telecommunications Not Good For Aviation?

Mon Feb 14, 2005 8:34 am

I read an article in a magazine that said that companies now are using Telecom as means of having meetings online. Company associates don't have to travel for meetings any more. It is a technology that is still new but it could have great potential in the near future. This could be bad for not only for corporate avia but also for the industry. What do you think will happen?
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RE: Telecommunications Not Good For Aviation?

Mon Feb 14, 2005 8:57 am

The IT revolution, or internet revolution, of communications revolution, has been enormously beneficial to commercial aviation.

It slashed the costs of distribution through on-line booking engines only about a decade after the so-called legacy global distribution systems reached about 95% of their current functionality.

These two developments made it easier for consumers to buy and fly, especially if they had half a brain. It also streamlined a lot of money eating 'back office' functions for those airlines smart enough to exploit them, as history tells, they were mainly the low cost carriers in the first instance, although all carriers of substance are doing that today.

Because the costs of flying have fallen quite dramatically within Europe, North America, Australia and SE Asia and economic activity has largely improved, we are seeing exceptional growth in much of the industry parallel with rather than in spite of improvements in communications.

Anyone who has even seen Bill Gates give a demo of how Microsoft is reducing the need for in person communications because of its brilliance...AND THEN SEEN THE WHOLE DEMO FREEZE will know that we are a long way from having a satisfactory alternative from the IT industry except for comparatively minor or brief events.

If you take this wholistic view, that communications developments have added to the common wealth, then they have undoubtedly been very good for commercial aviation because more people can afford to fly..and as the figures show, they are.

You will also see the latest improvements in in flight communications turn into a money making opportunity for carriers as they install send and receive sms and email systems right up to in flight web browsing.

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RE: Telecommunications Not Good For Aviation?

Mon Feb 14, 2005 9:10 am

As Antares said, before the IT revolution booking tickets was extremely difficult and expensive for everyone. I really don't see tele/video conferences causing the end of business travel by any means. Sure it might cause people not to fly out to see someone's PowerPoint presentation, but business travel will always be needed. I worked for a Massachusetts based biomedical company over the summer, and people there would go on business trips all the time, even though they had a video conference room. People would have to go check out devices across the country, or visit manufacturing sites around the world. Vendors would come to our site to try and sell us more stuff or help us set up testing equipment. These are all examples where traveling in person is required, no matter how sophisticated your technology is.
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RE: Telecommunications Not Good For Aviation?

Mon Feb 14, 2005 9:18 am

I should have added that I have seen many interviews over the years in which the airlines attributed travel generated by the IT/coms/computer sections of the industry as a major new source of business.

That business took a bad hit at about the time 9/11 wreaked even more havoc because we were in the dot com bust.

I can't speak for the IT sector abroad, but in Australia it seems to have gradually recovered, and it certainly remains an important source of passengers.

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RE: Telecommunications Not Good For Aviation?

Mon Feb 14, 2005 9:19 am

There is no doubt that it has cut down some airline travel but there is no subsititute for working in person.

I had to do some work with a company in Tel Aviv last year,I got more done in 10 days in Tel Aviv than the next 2 months working via live meeting and Skype (Free Web based Voice over IP).

Plus I got to fly on Peter Max on the way back...oh wait that is another thread  Smile

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RE: Telecommunications Not Good For Aviation?

Mon Feb 14, 2005 9:24 am

I think while modern high-speed telecommunications have reduced the need for lower-level corporate meetings, by human nature people like to close a deal by completing a business deal in person. As such, the drop in the number of passengers of business flights have not really been that significant.

What is significant is that many companies are using LCC's for corporate travel to save costs. For example, what percentage of passengers flying B6 (JetBlue) between LGB and JFK are business travellers? Or passengers flying WN (Southwest) between LAX and BWI? Or the percentage of passengers flying in and out of BUR working for the entertainment industry?

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