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It used to take three hours to book air cargo. Now, it takes us five minutes.

Air Export/Import Coordinator MC Trinter
Feature Updates Freight Insights

How Design Will Change Air Cargo

“Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.” — Steve Jobs

Remember what cell phones used to look like, pre smartphone days? Lots of shapes, lots of sizes.

Take the Samsung Juke. It was a phone that doubled as music player. This seems obvious now but back in 2007 this was revolutionary.


The Samsung Juke (image via Wikpedia)

It was cool for about a year and then it was completely blown out of the water when the first iPhone  showed up.

Using it was so easy, children could figure it out on their own in minutes.  And even though that first iPhone was a brick compared to modern phones – it couldn’t take video, or send text messages in landscape display, and even needed to be connected to a PC in order to set it up – it very quickly became the future-driving device it still is today..

Behind the iPhone’s success? Design. Specifically user design.

The Samsung Juke was a portable telephone that could also play music.

The iPhone, on the other hand, was a personal touchscreen computer that could make phone calls. The iPhone wasn’t designed around phone calls. It was designed around users.

Air Cargo Deserves the Same Attention

WebCargo has spent the past year working on something inspired by this realization. And today, those efforts have reached fruition – we’re announcing the launch of our Matrix View booking interface.

When you book air cargo, you aren’t (only) looking at the price per kilo.

You consider departure and arrival dates. You consider flight duration, the connection duration, airlines with certain regional or commodity expertise, and so much more. Depending on your customer’s needs, you may choose the fastest flight, or the cheapest. But nearly all of this is calculated in your heads, as you scroll through rates and schedules.

Until now.

So, much like the iPhone, we built this ground-up to work the way air cargo professionals work.

With it, you can compare flights across multiple parameters and find the perfect flight for the shipment in seconds. You can see live pricing and capacity information and know exactly how much space is left on the plane – and what it costs, right now. This isn’t a booking form you fax through the internet – it’s a 360° cockpit view of every detail and stream of data you need to make better, faster decisions that save time and money.

You can see a live demo of what this looks like here. And no, we’re okay sharing it publicly – the design is actually patented (see here European Union’s IPO RCD entry).

As one user described it:

“WebCargo’s Matrix View lets us instantly compare between different options across multiple airlines, quote real spot rates within minutes, and book with airline confirmation quickly and smoothly.”

We live for that feedback. Overall, early users report faster bookings, happier customers, and more enjoyable work. And of course they do. It’s been designed for them. And you, too. Come give it a test drive. You’re going to love what you see.