Memphis Airport uses Aira smart glasses to simplify airport experience for blind and low vision travellers


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Aira smart glasses work with the Aira app to enable passengers to share a view of their surroundings with a professional agent in real time.

Memphis International Airport (MEM) has announced a partnership with technology company Aira that will help to simplify the airport experience for blind and low vision travellers.

Through the new programme, passengers at MEM can access the Aira Airport network powered by its Site Access technology and connect with agents who act as visual interpreters. 

Aira smart glasses or the passenger’s smartphone camera work with the Aira app to enable the passenger to share views of their surroundings, crowd flow, signage and other objects from their perspective.

With this live view, Aira agents deliver a real-time narrative to the passenger using an augmented reality dashboard. They can assist with step-by-step navigation through the airport and provide assistance with other tasks such as finding flight information, locating and identifying baggage, and arranging transportation.

Aira provides subscription-based services to its customers, but MEM’s partnership means passengers will be able to use the service for free at the airport.

Scott Brockman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Memphis-Shelby County Airport Authority (MSCAA), said: “We are extremely excited about this programme and the additional accessibility it provides to blind and low vision passengers.”

Kevin Phelan, Vice President of Aira, added: “We’re proud to announce this partnership with an innovator like Memphis-Shelby County Airport Authority. As today’s fastest growing assistive community for the blind or low vision population, we focus on delivering immediate, accurate information anytime and anywhere.

“With the dynamic nature of traveller information, needs to quickly adjust to schedule or gate changes and challenges of moving through a crowded terminal, this is a perfect fit for what we do.”