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Bob Offutt

Senior Technology Analyst and Editorial Director, Innovation EditionDallas, Texas United States

Mr. Offutt brings over 20 years of experience in information technology, IT management and travel industry dynamics to Phocuswright. He was most recently the chief architect and senior vice president for Sabre Holdings where he defined the strategy and plan to migrate from a monolithic Mainframe environment to distributed open systems and a service oriented architecture. Prior to being Sabre's chief architect, Bob founded and led Sabre Labs, a technology incubator that made Sabre the industry leader in new online products and services. Before Sabre, he spent 26 years in the U.S. Coast Guard, where he led the agency's information technology unit. Bob has also served on the faculty of the University of Puget Sound, George Washington University and the University of Southern California. His education includes a BS in engineering from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy and a master's degree in management science from the U.S. Navy Postgraduate School.

Bob Offutt's Areas of Research
Bob Offutt is a travel technology visionary. His vast experience and hands on leadership in travel distribution make place him firmly at the forefront of innovation in travel. In his role as editorial director of Phocuswright's Innovation Edition and a leader of The Travel Innovation Summit, Bob knows how to identify the trends, technologies and platforms that will define the future of travel.

Recent Bob Offutt Travel Research

Technology Innovation
July 2015
Cognitive Computing in Travel: Probable or Pipe Dream?
Cognitive Computing in Travel: Probable or Pipe Dream?
$250 USDAnalyst: Bob Offutt

Cognitive computing, including Intelligent Personal Assistant (IPA) products such as Siri (Apple), Google Now and Cortana (Microsoft), have gained prominence in recent years. While cognitive computing and artificial intelligence (AI) technology is highly challenging, developing an effective business model to monetize the value of these technologies is even trickier. This Analysis explores some recent cognitive computing developments, including their shortfalls and expectations, next steps, and their potential impact on the travel value chain.

Technology Innovation
May 2015
Travel Innovation and Technology Trends 2015
Travel Innovation and Technology Trends 2015
Subscribers OnlyAnalyst: Bob Offutt, Colie Hoffman

Technology has so evolved that we can now use it to observe our own technology-related behavior. In real time, we can see how technology changes our lives, how we interact with it, and how it enables new business opportunities. As the gap between ourselves and our devices shrinks, connectivity and interoperability become more essential to our daily lives – and to commercial progress. For travel companies, competition has grown extremely intense, pushing sales to an all-time high in 2014. Before travel executives select tech investments for 2015 and beyond, they need to consider six major industry trends. All six share the same two focal points: the customer and the trip experience.

Technology Innovation
March 2015
The Future of Airfare Shopping
The Future of Airfare Shopping
$350 USDAnalyst: Bob Offutt

In the early 1990’s, air shopping and booking was largely dominated by four GDSs, which handled communication and data transfer between suppliers, intermediaries and various other points of sale. Today, air shopping is increasingly influenced by a range of other entities and platforms, including metasearch, third-party search, large computer systems on commodity hardware, open source software, large online travel agencies, airline fee reductions and cloud services. This Analysis examines the components of the legacy airfare shopping process, and the new technologies and user expectations that could potentially be the catalysts for reshaping airfare shopping.

Social & Search
November 2014
Collaborative Consumption and the Opportunity for Travel Professionals
Collaborative Consumption and the Opportunity for Travel Professionals
$450 USDAnalyst: Bob Offutt

Collaborative consumption – sometimes known as the sharing or peer-to-peer economy – can empower consumers to take advantage of services and facilities in new and potentially disruptive ways. It can also generate significant business revenue. While Airbnb and Uber are the best-known examples in the travel and transportation category, collaborative consumption is making a mark throughout the entire travel industry ecosystem. This Spotlight considers peer-to-peer services across the travel value chain, providing examples and identifying key issues, risks and opportunities.

Technology Innovation
October 2014
Automated Speech Recognition: Getting More Important Every Day
Automated Speech Recognition: Getting More Important Every Day
$250 USDAnalyst: Bob Offutt

Automated speech recognition (ASR) is growing in both popularity and capability. In the travel category, it has become a preferred method for interacting with computing devices, and a strategic technology for customer experience management (CEM). This Analysis examines current and planned ASR technology, including its potential to improve traveler experiences and boost ROI for suppliers and intermediaries.

Technology Innovation
September 2014
Fragmented Travel Content: How to Deal With It?
Fragmented Travel Content: How to Deal With It?
$350 USDAnalyst: Bob Offutt

In recent years, the travel industry has benefited from technologies that have aggregated and standardized data and processes to improve online shopping and booking. But most of these efforts have focused on air, and a wide variety of other travel content remains highly fragmented. This Analysis explores how the online travel industry can deliver quality shopping and buying experiences, despite the continued presence of fragmented content.

Technology Innovation
July 2014
Five (No, Six) Things That Travel Distribution Companies Must Do to Survive and/or Maximize Profitability
Five (No, Six) Things That Travel Distribution Companies Must Do to Survive and/or Maximize Profitability
$250 USDAnalyst: Bob Offutt

The travel distribution business has been fundamentally disrupted by OTAs, metasearch companies, Internet transparency and supplier direct initiatives. With distribution dynamics changing, small companies are faced with critical technology, content and business choices. This Analysis outlines six key strategies and tactics travel distribution companies must embrace in order to survive and stay profitable.

Technology Innovation
June 2014
Phocuswright and The Future of Travel Distribution: Innovation And Technology Trends 2014
Phocuswright and The Future of Travel Distribution: Innovation And Technology Trends 2014
Subscribers OnlyAnalyst: Bob Offutt

Discover how innovation and rapidly advancing technology are reshaping the travel distribution landscape. In this June 18, 2014 webinar deck and recording, Phocuswright analysts examine the key technology trends that travel businesses must track and address to stay ahead of the distribution curve.

Technology Innovation
May 2014
Hotel Technology: Delivering an Outstanding Customer Experience
Hotel Technology: Delivering an Outstanding Customer Experience
$250 USDAnalyst: Bob Offutt

The options for hoteliers to attract and retain customers using technology-based innovation have never been better. New technologies, evolving business models and heightened competition are providing hoteliers with both the opportunity and the impetus to leverage a variety of innovative products and services. This Analysis provides an overview of some of the unique opportunities available to the lodging industry that can help drive loyalty, fuel word-of-mouth and increase repeat business.

Technology Innovation
May 2014
Travel Innovation and Technology Trends: 2014 and Beyond
Travel Innovation and Technology Trends: 2014 and Beyond
$500 USDAnalyst: Bob Offutt, Colie Hoffman

In 2014, travel companies hold the power to introduce the next generation of technology-based services. Big data, new distribution channels, social media, and a focus on customer service are redefining travel. Despite the excitement of so many possible directions, companies will ensure their future in the travel marketplace by addressing technology needs wisely - not just boldly adopting The Next Big Thing.

More Bob Offutt Travel Research