Table of Content
- Client Overview
- Engagement Situation
- Key Engagement Requirements
- Xoriant Contributions
- Tools and Technologies
- Engagement Results
Our client is a well established global provider of onboard store technology and merchandising solutions which help airlines and other travel operators create, manage and control onboard retail environments customized to address the needs of their staff and customers. The company has catered to the needs of big players of the airline industry and has garnered a reputation of being a trusted onboard processing partner for clients across the globe.
Over the recent past e-retail has taken a big role, owing to the fact that customers want to make purchases at any location with information of the product made available to them. Moreover due to the growing competition, airlines have been trying to instill a strong level of customer engagement for travelers beyond the usual flight experience.
A Mobile application to have access to in-flight exclusive offers for items pertaining to travel and other needs seemed to be compelling for creating a point of difference. Our client wanted to develop a cross platform app through which flight attendants could sell products to customers onboard. Our client was seeking to engage with a partner having strong engineering capabilities in the cross platform app development area. Xoriant’s experience in developing various utility and business applications across mobile platforms made them the first choice to work with the client’s vision.
KEY ENGAGEMENT REQUIREMENTS
To implement Point of Sale (POS) solution that provides the following features:
- The app would pull data in reference with the products’ catalog, flight details, airline and crew information on the flight to the onboard customer.
- The application would enable the flight attendant to identify a passenger from the aircraft’s seatmap visually.
- The app would provide online payment of all types (credit, debit, and coupons e.t.c) to offer seamless and easy user experience for the flight attendants while making transactions.
- Provide the ability for flight attendants to realize the purchases using gift coupons, complementary services and offer discounts.
- Provide a key feature for the airline to capture the feedback from passengers and from flight attendants on the upkeep of the aircraft.
- Ensure secured business transactions.
- Display transaction details and enable generation of customer information report to enhance the customer service.
- Allow online and offine sale of transactions for the flight attendant. The flight attendant can synchronize all the transactions after the flight is completed allowing to perform offline transactions onboard. The back office data storage would also have details about the passenger seating and travel arrangement.
- The application was to be made extensible across different platforms such as iOS, Windows and Android.
Xoriant has a significant amount of experience in enterprise app development with a comprehensive portfolio covering different industrial segments such as finance, telecommunications, Hi-tech, healthcare and retail. Coupled with this Xoriant has a deep expertise in customer information management for providing clients with viable solutions developed on standardized methodologies, architecture and design. Owing to these factors, Xoriant emerged to be the right choice for the client. Regular meetings were held to garner a comprehensive understanding about the project’s requirements.
A team consisting of a technical architect, a UI designer, a Software developer and a QA engineer was deployed to meet the project requirements. Xoriant was involved in the complete process of the application development some of the key contributions are as follows:
- Application UI was designed as per iOS standards with various factors kept in mind such as usage of app during both offline and online mode and functioning of application during aircraft turbulence.
- A feature to present the Aircraft seatmap and lay out on the tablet was incorporated with optimal use of the real estate. The seatmap description would be made available from XML files.
- A feature to display product catalog was incorporated with a high quality responsive design to enable the flight attendant to easily browse through and search for items. Thus making the application provide a good user experience and allow flight attendants to meet customer requirements efficiently.
- Developed design as per requirements of 5” and 7” inch tablets and fully supported landscape & portrait orientations.
- Implementation of application support for the magnetic stripe reader to be connected and enable seamless integration of credit card payments with the mobile point of sales application.
- Real time integration was done for application support with the airline’s existing infrastructure.
- Integrated branding support features for automatic configuration of application name and icon as per the airline’s requirements.
- Development of data access components and business components such as :
- Fetching of data from back office to populate local database with products’ information
- Uploading of sales transactions and reports data to back office
- Uploading of sales transactions to credit card processor
- Developed C# wrapper over objective-C library for sleeve integration and collating credit card data.
- Integrated application to support localization so as to be viewed in different languages.
- Development of informative reporting system in order to cater to the sale of products and customer feedback.
- Stored credit card data in encrypted format in local database
- Implemented QA testing process of application for ipad mini device
TOOLS AND TECHNOLOGIES:
- MAC OS X 10.6 and above
- Xcode Designer
- Xamarin Studio for iOS
- Microsoft Visual Studio 2010
- C# 4.0, Objective-C
- Subversion for source control
- Successful deployment of application for iOS devices supporting both iOS 7 with backward compatibility up to iOS 6.
- The engagement has also led to opportunities for porting the application on to Android tablets as well.
- The successful usage of Xamarin’s cross platform support capabilities enabled access to a reusable backend system, thereby reducing development time and cost.
- Improved productivity of flight attendants due to reduction in time for on board customer service.
- Served as mode for flight attendants to optimize inventory accounts and sale performance.
- Improved the overall operations by fast as well as easy price and inventory checks.
- Helped airlines to improve customer loyalty and increase ROI.