Bitcoin not only introduced the world to the concept of digital money—it also introduced a new ledger system, called blockchain, that made bitcoin safe enough for digital money to even be possible. While blockchain has been used primarily to create a variety of digital currencies, its secure ledger allows a variety of potential uses, from recording the posts and votes on Steemit to smart contracts and cybersecurity.
JetBlue believes that one area of major impact will be travel. Understanding the Internet’s effect on travel—online booking, Airbnb, Lyft and Uber, and so on—JetBlue decide to create a venture arm, JetBlue Technology Ventures, to keep the company ahead of the curve. JTV says customers ought to see the biggest changes in artificial intelligence (AI) and biometrics, including face recognition.
Blockchain will also allow for a more secure Internet of Things (IoT), and one should certainly expect the airlines to be a major player in IoT developments, especially with the creation of hybrid and electric airline propulsion, such as that being developed by Zunum Aero, a company in which JetBlue invests. Sensors throughout planes will constantly communicate information to pilots, airlines, and terminals, so everyone at every point has critical knowledge of each plane’s running condition, helping to determine pre-maintenance needs. This system will keep everyone as safe as possible.
Blockchain technology, combined with AI, biometrics, face recognition, and IoT, should ensure that JetBlue and others will run safer planes and offer safer terminals—from parking to boarding. Both the development of the internet itself and of blockchain demonstrate the difficulty in predicting what the next disruptive technology will be, when it will arrive, or how it will be used. That’s why JetBlue is invested in staying ahead of the curve and in making sure the current technologies can be used to produce the best results for its customers.