Genuine (and valuable) uses of Google Glass at the sharp end of the travel industry have been relatively hard to come by so far.
But Virgin Atlantic has now stepped forward with a pilot project to equip those working as "concierges" in its Upper Class lounge at London's Heathrow Airport with the head-mounted device.
The six-week project, which is being carried out in conjunction with aviation IT company SITA, works something like this:
Top-end customers will be greeted by a Glass-clad Virgin representative when they are delivered at the chauffeur drop-off point at the terminal.
Focusing on the personalised service the carrier likes to push with its classiest ticket, staff will start the check-in process on arrival as well as receiving real-time updates for each passenger via the device.
During the escorted process, weather and local events at their destination, including translating any foreign language information, will be given to the passenger until they reach the lounge.
Virgin and SITA say the results of the pilot will determine whether there is a need for a wider roll-out of the technology, including whether to tap further into the passenger details to manage personal preferences such as dietary, meal and on-board requirements.
SITA will also deploy Sony Smartwatches so that supervisors can evaluate staff requirements and availability. Both the Google Glass and Sony devices will be integrated into the existing passenger service system.
Upper Class folk choosing to join their fellow passengers in the general terminal at Heathrow will be able to use a new bluetooth-run system (running on Apple's iBeacon) which alerts them via their iOS-hosted devices of services, discounts and updates on flight boarding schedules.
Interestingly, Virgin is claiming the pilot and general onslaught of technology for its premium passengers is a move to put some sizzle back into the travel experience.
Director of IT, Dave Bulman, says:
"While it’s fantastic that more people can now fly than ever before, the fact that air travel has become so accessible has led to some of the sheen being lost for many passengers."
SITA's chief technology officer, Jim Peters, reckons "2014 is shaping up to be the breakout year for wearable technology".