Difficult as it is to imagine, Travel Daily News international says that in the all-important travel space, mobile phone manufacturers look ready to take over from Google as major technology players in the lucrative travel and tourism business.
Working with the World Travel Market’s Global Trends Report out of London, both Travel Daily News and Opodo Travel News say that smart phone and other technologies “could soon take over from search engines (specifically Google) as the most important players in European travel.”
It’s already happening.
Travel research data from Industry Wire says that giants like Google are being rejected in favor of social media “such as Facebook as a portal to access all their information as well as seek to access travel via purpose built applications.”
Already 34% of UK travelers polled said they use their mobile device (not Google) to find travel information, 29% to check reservations and a huge 25% of the 1,200 people polled said they use their mobile devices to book accommodations.
And that’s where the money is.
The biggest boost to the use of mobile devices to conduct travel-related transactions is the rapid growth of location based applications, accessible only via mobile devices and GPS.
These services like Faceebook’s new Places and Deals and Foursquare and Gowalla deliver deals, discounts and location-specific opportunities to travelers, and in the process, hook them on using only their mobile device for their travel needs and plans.
What’s really impressive, is that there seems to be no signs of the mobile travel technology market maturing.
Fiona Jeffrey, World Travel Market Chairman, says that the trend will continue and “smart phone manufacturers will become more important to travel than search engines.”
Google will unlikely be left in the dust. We suspect it will adapt and adjust and not leave any travel revenue on the table.