E-commerce integrated into passenger planes
14 March 2012 - 16:21 by Graham Miller
Amazon, the world's largest online retailer, has now made its services available to people flying miles above the surface of the earth, in a move which could revolutionise the experience of shopping during air travel.
For the time being, Amazon is only enabling its services through Delta Air Lines and passengers flying within the US will be the first to experience this unusual form of safe shopping online.
Any Wi-Fi enabled device will be able to connect to the plane's onboard hotspots and the default homepage to which browsers will be directed should include banner ads promoting the Amazon shopping sites.
Amazon has taken into account the fact that many passengers will be using mobile phones to do their airborne browsing, which is why such users will be redirected to the m-commerce iteration of its safe shopping online platform.
What makes the service most significant is that major investment from Delta and Amazon has made the access entirely free, so there will be nothing to prevent the flyers from browsing the extensive catalogue of products offered by the retailer.
In the past, many people have been able to shop while flying, but the selection has typically been limited to whatever can be squeezed into a brochure, with collection carried out once the plane has landed.
Now people in the US will be able to harness one of the most extensive e-commerce services around to make purchases while they fly and then have the items delivered to their homes. This means that they will be able to enjoy them as soon as they return from a trip.
This type of feature might soon be available on flights outside of the US, which could introduce plane-based e-commerce to the UK, Europe and many other countries across the globe.