Increased passenger traffic and global capacity constraints are set to drive airport IT spending to $4.63bn by 2023, according to a report by Frost & Sullivan.

The ‘Digital Transformation in Airports’ report stated that airports are developing their digital transformation objectives in line with strategic planning activities in a bid to address major performance indicators across all areas of operation.

Frost & Sullivan senior industry analyst Renjit Benjamin said: “Capacity constraints coupled with unprecedented growth in aircraft and passenger traffic, as well as competition and the promise of new non-aeronautical revenue streams necessitate a transformation in airports’ value proposition, by leveraging emerging technologies and transitioning from a process-centric to a passenger-centric business model.”

Airports in Europe are unable to keep up with the burgeoning growth in passenger traffic and constraints on capacity, while those in the APAC region are looking for solutions to improve their brands and enhance the travel experience.

“Applications based on biometrics help airports automate passenger screening processes in collaboration with border authorities, reducing waiting times.”

As a result, new technologies such as biometrics, blockchain, data analytics, and artificial intelligence are currently driving digital transformations in airports.

Applications based on biometrics help airports automate passenger screening processes in collaboration with border authorities, reducing waiting times.

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The report states that blockchain technology can be used to create secure and faster passenger journeys.

Data generated by various airport systems are collated and analysed, enabling airports to use historic, real-time and forecasted data to take proactive steps to deal with peak operational periods and disruptions.

Artificial intelligence (AI) is already being used in a number of passenger-related applications and will allow operators to better manage airport spaces and allocate resources, according to optimised flow prediction models.

These technologies create further opportunities for IT and digital security companies as airports transition to a data-driven infrastructure.