Star Alliance, the airline alliance, and NEC Corporation, an IT, network and biometric technology company, have formed a partnership to develop a biometric data-based identification platform aimed at improving the travel experience for frequent flyer loyalty program customers of Star Alliance member carriers. Once implemented, Star Alliance customers who opt-in to biometrics will have a seamless and hands-free passenger experience, allowing them to pass through curb-to-gate touchpoints within airports, such as check-in kiosks, bag-drop, lounges and boarding gates by using a secure identity management solution featuring facial recognition technology. Those checkpoints traditionally require both a passport and boarding pass, The service will be available to customers who are enrolled in one of the Star Alliance frequent flyer programs and who have authorized the use of their biometric data. Star Alliance and NEC aim to introduce the first biometric solution at an airport hub by the first quarter of 2020.