Aug 20 2012

Life Is Good: iPads Facilitate Airport Food Delivery at the Gate

What’s better than frequent flyer miles for travelers? Food service at the gate.

Just when you think people have run out of new ways to use tablets, out comes another innovative idea.

Tablets are being used for a variety of tasks in healthcare settings, restaurants, schools and law firms, and the devices have already made their way to airports, since pilots are adopting tablets in lieu of paper flight manuals. But food and beverage operator OTG is changing the game by deploying a fleet of tablets for use at the gate.

Fodor’s reports that OTG will spend more than $10 million to roll out 7,000 iPads at three international airports.

Here are more details on what OTG has planned:

What this means: travelers can order food from an assortment of quality restaurants—perhaps an assortment of bruschetta from the Italian Bar Brace, a pizza from Crust or a steak frites from Bisoux brasserie at LaGuardia—and have it delivered within 15 minutes right to the gate. The iPads are used to order within the restaurants, also, cutting down on service delays and waiting times.

In addition to allowing easy placement of orders, the iPads give travelers free internet usage and the availability to securely log on to Facebook, Twitter, and personal email while dining. Travelers can also stay up-to-date on flight status, catch up on the news with pre-loaded apps like USA Today, or entertain themselves with games like Hangman.

This means travelers will no longer have to run from Terminal A to Terminal D just to scoop up their favorite barbecue sandwich from that quirky little shop in the airport. They will just walk up to an iPad, place an order, have a seat at the gate and wait.

This is yet another shining example of how mobile computing is serving customers’ needs. Long live the tablet!