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Innova doing away with the paper round…

Posted 11 September 2018 · Add Comment

A major airline says it is saving fuel and trees by using a management software solution developed by Turkish company, Innova. Steve Nichols finds out more.

A system called Cabin-4, running on iPad crew tablets, was launched in March 2014. Since then it has gone though two major upgrades.
The unnamed airline estimates that, since the launch, it has been saving up to 1.5 tonnes of paper per month by doing away with bulky logs and reports.
Innova is a 1,000+ strong Apple-authorised system integrator and one of the biggest software developers in Turkey. Established in 1999, it serves its client base from main offices in Istanbul and Ankara, a manufacturing facility in Istanbul, and support offices in 12 cities across Turkey.
Innova says its has delivered solutions and services to customers in 37 countries.
Murat Kayihan, the company’s senior fintech director, said: “An airline’s crew has to complete an awful lot of form filling with reports and documentation, but this can now all be done on an iPad.
“The chief purser has to maintain a cabin maintenance log, crew management schedules, frequent flyer data and much more. The iPads definitely enable a better customer interaction as well.
“A new crew management app is helping with scheduling and we have also worked on seven different modules for flight operations.”
The iPads allow the crew to file all the necessary data to the airlines’ headquarters, including placing orders for supplies, filing holiday requests and working rotas for team members.
“The update process is also much faster, as the iPads can be synched in the background via Wi-Fi, either once the aircraft has landed or via in-flight connectivity (IFC) if it is fitted,” explained Kayihan.
Even ensuring that the aircraft has just the right amount of water on board, which the app can calculate, can make a big fuel saving.
Prior to Cabin-4 being introduced, paper records had to be sent to the airlines’ control centres and manually entered into a computer system. This made it difficult to address important issues immediately and made monitoring complicated.
Kayihan added that keeping maintenance crews updated is one of the main benefits of being able to download data to the ground while in flight.
“For example, if an aircraft is flying from Istanbul to Hamburg and a passenger spills something on a seat, the ground crew will already know before the aircraft lands and can take action immediately. The whole process is now much more seamless,” he said.
Innova says it is looking to extend the crew tablet technology to other operators, and fellow Turkish company, Pegasus Airlines, has also been using a variant of the app.
“We own the source code 100%, and if airlines want to add new modules that can be done,” Kayihan said. “We can also handle development work for Android devices, such as the Samsung Galaxy Tab.”
Innova is also working on software for pilot training as the airline customer has recently been recruiting heavily. These new pilots all need to be certified and the Innova app allows them to be tested on different aspects of flight planning.
The airline that Innova developed the solution for currently has about 30 aircraft fitted with L-band in-flight connectivity delivered by Inmarsat’s SwiftBroadband system. While not fast enough for more strenuous applications like streaming video, it can more than handle small data transfers such as those required by Cabin-4.
 

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