Today, the work of third-party logistics providers (3PLs) is still very much physical, and international freight forwarding and transportation remain labor-intensive. Huge advances in technology over the past 200 years – from the train to the automobile to the airplane – have brought transportation to its present state: specialized and relatively inexpensive.
Transport options have proliferated and increased in complexity during the past two centuries, but since the invention of the airplane, there have been few advances in creating new kinds of transportation.
Sure, we are figuring out ways to move things more quickly, in larger conveyances, and we can build better and more efficient infrastructure to do so. But new modes of transport dedicated to moving physical goods are not where the frontier of transportation lies. Digital transformation is.
Disruptive technologies and a new customer experience
New technologies including the Internet of Things (IoT), artificial intelligence (AI) and blockchain have the potential to disrupt the business in the coming years.
Traditional logistics and transportation players are being challenged as new competitors inundate the market with innovative business models and approaches that improve upon the old way of doing things.
Panalpina, too, is in motion. We recognize that the use of information technology and the digitization of services are core pillars of our business and preconditions for future success.
Ultimately, we aim to offer customers a completely new experience when dealing with us.
Mixed reality visualizes the journey of fruits and flowers at Fruit Logistica
Panalpina has firmly set its sights on innovation, customer centricity and digitalization. A great example of this and recent showcase of our approach to technology is the holographic experience that we offered to visitors of our stand at Fruit Logistica in Berlin last week.
The mixed (or hybrid) reality application showcased the journey of fruits and flowers in holographic animations. It also delivered information about typically transported perishables, transport routes, modes and conditions. The merging of real and virtual elements resulted in a unique and futuristic experience that delighted everyone who put on the HoloLens.
Special flyer triggers augmented reality
In addition, Panalpina created a mobile version of the experience, enabling users to revisit it at home or on the move. A special flyer served as an augmented reality (AR) trigger: By scanning the QR code on the flyer with their own device, users could access the Panalpina mobile AR experience without having to install an app.
The full holographic experience and the lighter web-based AR version were both designed and produced by SAINT ELMO’S Berlin.
Digitalization in the freight forwarding and logistics industry continues to make great strides and Panalpina is at the forefront of it.