One year ago, Amadeus unveiled NDC-X at the Business Travel Show. 

NDC-X is the name Amadeus has given to its efforts to test practical use cases of the data transmission standard to deliver “improved capabilities for the industry”.

Speaking to BBT at last week’s Business Travel Show, Clare de Bono, head of product and innovation at Amadeus IT Group, said that one year on, it’s been a “fantastic year” so far.

VIDEO: Watch Clare de Bono talk to BBT at the Business Travel Show below:

“When we began announcing NDC-X back then, we’d actually done an awful lot of work, working with 18 different travel agencies to help us work it out, how to design it,” she said.

“We said we’d be certified as an agency and IT provider, and we were by the summer. Travix, a large OTA, is also bringing us expertise in web services, while Flight Centre is exposing us to both business travel and retail. We’re also working with American Express Global Business Travel, CWT and BCD Travel.”

However, this year no new announcements were made as de Bono said NDC-X was an “evolving story”. “We’re at the start of it really, as the [airlines’] standards are still onboarding. For example, some airlines are servicing [offering rebooking in the NDC environment], some aren’t.”

De Bono revealed 80 agents had so far been involved with NDC-X, and their feedback had given Amadeus 18 months’ work of development. “They showed us what they needed, bringing together all types of content. It’s been at the heart of the Amadeus Travel Platform… API, GDS, NDC, it’s all about a single view, a single booking flow,” she added.

She also warned how NDC will “blow up the number of calls we’re doing” as at its peak there could be “one million data transactions per second”. “We need to get 90 per cent of searches back within four seconds. People are so intolerant of waiting now; customers demand speed,” she said, and the technology giant’s move to the cloud in 2017 had been made in preparation of this future demand surge. 

Meanwhile, Amadeus’s platform is “One Order” ready. One Order is IATA’s proposed new standard to replace the multiple booking, ticketing, delivery and accounting methods with one single order management process. De Bono argued that this will come after NDC, as NDC underpins One Order technology, and following a pilot with British Airways, “Amadeus was ready”. 

During the show, she added Amadeus was showcasing the next generation of its Sell Connect platform, “giving people a view of what’s coming in the next few months”.

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