Bytes and bricks keep Bengaluru airport flourishing.

Bytes and bricks keep Bengaluru airport flourishing.

Their way wound through the international airport of Bengaluru in 2008, the first year of its operations. That number more than trebled to 33 million last year, also is forecast to treble again over the next decade to keep up with the demands of India’s Silicon Valley.

A second runway will be operational at the year’s end, and another terminal is proposed. But it is going to require over bricks to cope with the rise in the number of passengers. There is A transformation that is digital stranded at the airport, adding the bricks to get power and bytes. Being at the tech capital of the nation is an edge, and numerous startups are currently working to assist with this programme that has multiple components.

Yellow Messenger, as an example, provides a multilingual chatbot to reply passenger inquiries. Apart from solving problems and improving customer experience, self-service options that are roll-out will be helped by the chatbot like boarding, which will cut the time taken throughout the airport at different phases on a passenger’s path.

The chatbot may help by participating with passengers on purchasing options, increase the airport’s earnings. Again, the value of the dialog that is automated multiplies when it is connected to assist the passenger get to a store or restaurant.

“They’re looking at a bigger picture where specific elements from companies such as ours are stitched together and presented as an entire solution.”


BIAL’s invention partner to connect the dots is Accenture. The system integrator brings an array of startups to operate with BIAL, but also irons out wrinkles as proven ways to mesh with disruptors and fresh technology.

“There’s a cultural element to electronic transformation that’s often missed,” says Satyaki Raghunath, BIAL’s chief strategy and development officer. “Often the biggest impediment to any transformation in massive businesses is inner inertia because people are comfortable with the status quo”

The first part in creating a programme a success is articulating an electronic roadmap that lets everyone involved see where they are and where they are going. It soon became apparent that they had to”architect programs instead of individual point solutions,” states Raghunath. Biometric-based dressing table, the first platform, is customer-facing, but you can find others taking shape in the end that are equally transformative. One of them is digitalization of processes across the enterprise. A fourth platform at an early stage is IoT (Web of Things).


As a pilot project, Bengaluru-based startup Atoll Solutions has hooked a subset of their energy meters with sensors in the airport to feed data into a digital dashboard. Venting, heating and air conditioning efficiency is essential to get an airport to keep up a ambience that is fantastic but also to decrease cost. An system may do that by tracking and measuring energy consumption and quality, which plugs into analytics for load control in addition to breakdowns before they occur.

For Atoll, functioning at a sprawling airport posed unique challenges. “The meters are widely spread. The wireless technologies that is usual won’t do. We used wireless net technology where a single meter communicates with the other and extends the scope,” states Atoll CEO and co-founder Jithu Niruthambath, that functioned for more than a decade at Texas Instruments prior to become an entrepreneur.

The startup’s value proposition comes from the detectors it designs for different usage cases in addition to how it reads information. “We have done around 25 sensors useful for preventive maintenance, ecological monitoring and so forth. Whenever we get an opportunity with a new client, we redo detectors which then become useful in different applications,” states Niruthambath. BIAL thus plays a role in the startup’s development by helping construct new IP.

Energy efficiency is only one of the first test cases for IoT at the airport. Another use case for real time information from IoT devices aims to decrease the turnaround time to get an aircraft right. In fact, all assets like shuttle fleet and services management would come to be far more efficient. Since BIAL advances along its electronic roadmap, the analytics platform keeps maturing with numerous data sources such as aspects apart from IoT. New possibilities constantly throw up. “Every time we think we know something, we’re amazed by answers we get in the information,” says Raghunath.


The open innovation programme with Accenture of BIAL is currently bringing about a change in a deeper level also. “As we’ve gone into the travel, each little foray has led to something else,” says Raghunath.

Such a programme, using a roadmap that is long-term, makes it easier for startups. “Considering that Accenture is engaged in the general digital transformation work for BIAL, which has an innovation angle as well, our team has a clear comprehension of the roadmap, the problems we’re trying to solve, and which startups could come in at exactly what point,” says Accenture India MD Avnish Sabharwal, who pioneered the deal with BIAL a year or two ago. “This reduces the time to market for a startup, which doesn’t need to negotiate with the customer separately ordinarily.

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