Flying high: Delta equips 19,000 flight attendants with Windows Phones

Still not seeing too many people using Windows Phone(s msft)? You will if you take a flight on Delta(s dal): The airline announced on Thursday that all 19,000 of the company’s flight attendants will have a Windows Phone on board.
Each flight attendant will carry a Nokia Lumia 820(s nok) with AT&T(s t) service, but they won’t be making calls from the sky or checking their Facebook pages at 40,000 feet. The handsets will use Wi-Fi and LTE mainly for these customer services thanks to software from Avanade on the Microsoft Dynamics for Retail mobile point-of sale platform:

  • Near real-time credit card processing for on-board purchases, including upgrades to Delta’s popular Economy Comfort seating. On-board Economy Comfort upgrades will begin on transcontinental and international flights before being offered on flights across Delta’s system.
  • Convenient eReceipts that can be emailed to customers.
  • Customers’ use of pre-paid credit cards for on-board purchases.
  • Quicker transaction processing times.
  • In the near future, the ability to read coupons displayed on a customer’s mobile device.

This isn’t a one-time deal either. As part of Delta’s agreement, the airline will upgrade the handsets to Nokia’s newest devices over the next three years. It’s not clear if that’s a one-time upgrade or several upgrade cycles, but it’s a nice little boon for Nokia.
The news coincides with another bright spot: Microsoft Windows Phone has moved from fourth to second place in Latin America for the second quarter of 2013. Microsoft announced the accomplishment on Wednesday, citing the latest figures from research firm IDC.