An analysis by global IT provider SITA has revealed that Chinese airports and airlines are investing more on innovation than other countries.

With the ‘Smart Airport’ concept introduced in the country, about 72% of airports in mainland China are investing in new technology compared to 58% worldwide.

Chinese airlines are spending 38% of their IT budget on innovative technological development, which is higher than the global average of 32%.

According to SITA’s analysis, 93% of passengers travelling in and out of Chinese airports carry smartphones and other personal technology during their journey.

This will reportedly result in a major shift to ‘off-airport’ services that allow passengers to check-in using their own technology.

The report shows that only 28% of passengers prefer using an airport counter for check-in, while more than 59% prefer using technology.

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About 67% passengers want to use their smartphones for various identification and access purposes, such as boarding the plane and entering airport lounges.

SITA China vice-president and general manager May Zhou said: "Our global IT surveys cover trends from the perspective of passengers, airlines and airports.

"We combine this with SITA’s on-the-ground industry experience to provide a unique 360 degree view of technology investment and usage within air travel.

"We work with airlines and airports across China to identify opportunities, work together and invest in innovative technology."

"We work with airlines and airports across China to identify opportunities, work together and invest in innovative technology that can meet and exceed the expectations of travellers."

About 62% of Chinese airports use social media to provide real-time data and notifications to passengers.

The report also shows that 72% of passengers want to be informed carousel wait times for luggage collection.

Zhou added: "Investments are now being made. Over the next couple of years, 85% of airports are planning projects in sensor technologies while 82% plan to have business intelligence initiatives for passenger flow in place."

Image: About 93% of passengers travelling to and from China prefer to use smartphones for their journey. Photo: courtesy of SITA.