What we’re reading: iPhone as a virtual concierge, Bernstein predicts more aircraft deferrals, Flybe interested in bmi



The iPhone turns virtual concierge for new Vegas hotel

At the Hotel32, a boutique hotel atop the Monte Carlo in Las Vegas, you can order room service or get fresh towels without having to talk to a person.

The Hotel32, a new boutique hotel atop the Monte Carlo Resort and Casino in Las Vegas, gives guests branded iTouches when they first check in. The devices, which run on a mobile content and commerce platform called Hotel Evolution, act as virtual concierges. There are no ads. L.A.-based mobile and web design firm runtriz developed the platform.

Bernstein flags potential for more aircraft deferrals, excess capacity

Bernstein Research has raised concerns that while passengers will return in 2009-2010, a large number of aircraft deliveries slated for the same time period will lead to excess capacity. This means that airlines will be deferring aircraft deliveries.

In a report issued Friday, the firm said that while the cyclical case for buying commercial aircraft OEM stocks is good, the industry has not yet turned the corner on the cycle. “Airline yields remain down and airline profitability is a long way off,” the report cautioned. However, it forecast that moderating declines in traffic and surprisingly high load factors should position the industry for better year-over-year performance in the fourth quarter.

Flybe confirms bmi interest, denies it has joined BA in bid

Flybe has confirmed that it is interested in acquiring parts of bmi and has expressed its interest to Lufthansa.

Lufthansa said earlier this month that it had received interest from 12 potential buyers for the sale of bmi, in which it holds an 80% stake. “The bigger issue is, from what we understand, that the bmi losses are much higher than previously reported,” [Chairman and CEO Jim] French told [ATWOnline], adding, “Some parts of the [bmi] business fit in very well in our network, but we are a very low risk company so any kind of deal will require a very detailed due diligence.” Bmi’s losses will amount to £150-£170 million on revenue of around £1 billion this year, according to some media reports.

(Photo: eisenbahner/Flickr Creative Commons)