Japan Airlines Using Google Glass to Perform Inspections

Japan Airlines

About three months ago, Virgin Atlantic started running a trial to see how Google Glass can help them improve a customer’s overall experience. Their test group was small with it being mainly used to get information for first class fliers. Still, while the test group was small, Virgin Atlantic said the trial / test was a success.

It seems we have some more news coming out of the airline industry. Japan Airlines has found a unique usage for Google Glass. Japan Airlines, with help from Nomura Research Institute, is conducting a trial with the glasses at the Honolulu airport. The trial is being done to see how the device would perform as an inspection tool.

The trial consists of Google Glass being worn by cargo and maintenance personnel that will be working around the plane. The cargo and maintenance personnel will be inspecting the plane while wearing the device. The thing is that they will not be the ones who will be deciding if a plane is safe or not. The crew chosen to wear Google Glass, oddly enough, isn’t trained to assess an airplane.

When the crew walks around the plane and inspects different things, they are streaming video and whatever else the device picks up to the Japan Airline headquarters. The people who are at the headquarters will be reviewing the video, pictures, etc. and they will decide whether or not the plane is safe to fly.

The people wearing Google Glass, who are not trained to assess a plane, will not be flying completely blind. The maintenance staff will be receiving instructions by audio the whole time the inspection is going down. Images and other things that the maintenance team might need for referencing will also be displayed on the screen of Google Glass.

They will also be using Google Glass and a barcode reader in the glasses to reconfirm cargo and luggage as it is being checked in. And, they will definitely be using the device to communicate with each other via phone calls and emails.

As we mentioned above, Japan Airlines is doing this whole trial in conjunction with Nomura Research Institute. The Nomura Research Institute is the one who is helping develop the necessary applications and interfaces.

If the trial goes well, then the airline might start using the device for things like passenger assistance. Virgin Atlantic is currently using the device for passenger assistance and they’ve said the device works well in that area.

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