Airport food and beverage operator OTG will soon be stocking airport terminals across North America with free to use iPads. Similar to what you’d find at a retail store display, the iPads will be locked to tables and have restricted access. Among the applications said to be available are Safari for web browsing, Facebook and select games. In addition to severing up pre-flight amusement, the iPad kiosks will also double as a charging station for phones and computers.
OTG plans on using this strategy as a method to help calm travelers who may be stressed by the chaotic atmosphere of an airport. The company elected to use the iPad over other tablets on the market do to its extreme popularity. “We’re very bullish on the iPad and customer satisfaction and client satisfaction,” CEO Rick Blatstein told Gigaom. The free service is already in testing in terminals 2 and 3 of New York’s JFK (Delta’s terminal, for example, already offers the service) and terminal D of LaGuardia. OTG expects to buy anywhere from 25,000 to 100,000 iPads to distribute across airports, in total.
While OTG’s efforts may sound considerate, it should also be mentioned that these strategically placed tablets will also have pre-installed applications that will recommend food or merchandise from one of the company’s airport shops. Any orders from those shops can be delivered to your gate, too. OTG plans to further deploy this service across multiple airports, such as Minneapolis, St. Paul International, Toronto Pearson International and additional terminals within LaGuardia.