Gulf Air, Bahrain’s national carrier, chose ANIXE, a leading travel technology provider, to develop its mobile application for both the IOS and Android systems. The app, recently launched in the Apple AppStore and Google Play Store, offers travellers a number of unique features. This means Gulf Air’s customers can control their travel experience from the palm of their hand.
Air Transport Mobile Insights
We have witnessed the mobile revolution take the world by storm. People continue to spend more and more time on their mobile devices, using them for a plethora of different things almost every minute of the day. From scheduling and navigation to communication and entertainment, the mobile trend seems to grow exponentially with no end in sight.
Yet, according to the AppAnnie 2017 Travel Report: despite the upward trend of mobile apps, many airlines still haven’t incorporated mobile technology into their overall strategy. That gap leaves significant opportunity for companies to monetize on global mobile technology services.
Additionally, SITA’s 2018 Passenger IT Trends Survey revealed that 98% of all airline passengers carry at least one device and 70% carry two or more devices whilst traveling.
As mobile technology provides airlines an opportunity for continuous engagement across the whole travel cycle, it becomes an integral part of their business development strategy. Gulf Air has stepped up its game with a newly developed mobile solution for its passengers.
Streamline and improve the travel experience
ANIXE is a leading travel technology provider specializing in custom integration with different providers, in extracting and advanced offer processing and distribution through different marketing channels. ANIXE’s vision is to connect the travel market across all corners of the globe, to facilitate efficient travel trade for buyers and sellers everywhere. On the market for twenty years, ANIXE’s solid reputation and pioneering technology continues to draw clients like airlines, tour operators, OTAs and travel agents from around the world.
What did the design process look like? The challenge ANIXE faced was to provide a simple but smart mobile app to enable travelers a quick and convenient search and book capabilities as well as instant contact with the brand using different mobile operating systems. The main project assumptions were seamless interaction across platforms, covering the complete travel cycle, consistent user interface, and robust architecture.
Both native and hybrid apps for mobile devices and tablets are supported by ANIXE. Top functionalities and graphical design for the user interface were designed to ensure consistency with the internet booking engine or were adjusted to airline requirements to improve the overall user experience. Going through all the process at the airport is even more convenient and faster with the new mobile search and booking engine, manage my booking feature, check-in, and boarding pass module.
The first version was developed fully native which means each app is built separately for every operating system like iOS and Android. On the other hand, a hybrid app is like a shell developed independently for each system, which launches the app on the website. Both solutions work smoothly, provide a similar user-experience and are available in the online app stores.
As developing a native app takes two times longer, both ANIXE and Gulf Air decided to go with the hybrid version first, so the project was divided into several phases.
Hybrid mobile app users can enjoy online check-in and time table modules on their portable devices, whenever and wherever they are. Splash and loading screen were customized to support all language versions Gulf Air presents on its website. On the IOS, the user experience was additionally optimized and expanded by a native tab bar, easy content browsing and access to the main modules at the tip of a passengers’ fingers. According to user reviews on the App Store and Google Play, passengers are pleased and are looking forward to new features. Other robust modules to improve user experience and allow for inspirational booking like Flight Watch are to come in the next step.
Fly higher with Gulf Air’s app
Gulf Air is committed to being an industry leader developing products and services that reflect the evolving needs and aspirations of its passengers. The airline operates a customer-oriented business model that assumes constant growth and innovations to shorten the distance between clients and the airline. Based on the Gulf Air experience, over 30% flights were booked via mobile devices. Therefore, the company decided to expand sales channels by introducing a dedicated solution through mobile app stores. Research results, as well as the marketing strategy to expand distribution channels with mobile app stores, were the main targets of the project. All the needed information to allow travelers to go through the airport gates only with a mobile device will be gathered by the Gulf Air app to facilitate and simplify the whole boarding process. The airline’s strategic plans are to expand sales channels via the mobile app to provide passengers with the unique user experience.
“We chose ANIXE for this project as their offer and competences stand out from the competition. At this day and age the importance of technology is at its highest as customers are becoming more and more tech-savvy and we are happy to cater for their needs with the launch of our mobile app. We invite our passengers to download the app and interact with its multi functions. We will continue to develop and add more features in the future to provide a smooth and seamless travel experience for everyone” says Mr. Vincent Coste, Gulf Air Chief Commercial Officer.
Help travelers from takeoff to landing
ANIXE currently is working on the native app to empower Gulf Air with a native mobile technology with a B2C flow. The upgraded version will include a wide range of additional modules to surpass travelers’ expectations. In the next steps of the development, push notification service will be available as well as a boarding pass and online/offline messaging center to support the app even without having access to the Internet. And the last but not least important feature will be advanced push notifications. They have two main purposes, providing the passenger with more information about their flight or baggage and selling ancillary services to monetize the mobile channel. The native app has been designed to be a single point of contact for clients to search and book flights, ancillaries and whatever the customers need. The airline will be empowered by the new mobile app with extended promotional capabilities and allow for users to directly contact with the brand at any time.
Mobile technology offers airlines a new opportunity to personalize offerings based on passenger history and future travel plans. Targeted promotions have the potential to provide more passenger-specific offers that meet customer’s preferences and provide incremental revenues to the airline.