Mobile Travelers Spark Industry-Wide Innovation
Author: Cathy Schetzina
Published: March 15, 2012
With smartphone adoption soaring, the tug-of-war to attract the attention of mobile travelers is in full swing. As the ranks of always-on, always-connected travelers continues to grow, travel suppliers and intermediaries are vying for traveler ownership in each phase of the travel life cycle.
PhoCusWright's recent Innovation Edition report Mobile Hits the Mainstream: Technology and Industry Trends, features findings from interviews with over 50 travel executives to identify the key areas of mobile focus for each. Both suppliers and intermediaries are looking for ways to exploit mobile's unique characteristics, with many aiming to fill out their mobile offerings with end-to-end services. Below, a hint of what's to come in selected segments/channels:
Airlines: For airlines, mobile offers an important opportunity to promote direct distribution. Travelers will likely interact exclusively with the airlines for mobile services that enhance air travel efficiency (e.g., mobile boarding passes, in-airport passenger tracking) and improve the overall travel experience (e.g., timely, targeted ancillary offers).
Hotels: Hoteliers put their initial mobile efforts into building out booking capabilities – and the strong growth of mobile hotel bookings suggests this strategy was a good one. With booking now under their belts, hoteliers are shifting their focus to in-stay/on-property services.
Car rental: Although most car rental companies currently offer mobile booking, adoption has been relatively sluggish. In 2012, mobile car rental bookings will begin to have a greater impact. With car rental executives increasing their focus on mobile, mobile check-in, check out and car entry are on the horizon.
Online travel agencies: In addition to enabling travelers to search multiple suppliers at once, OTAs have unique visibility into traveler itineraries – a key element in providing end-to-end mobile services that are personalized based on context. Expect to see OTAs begin to exploit their knowledge of where travelers are in the travel process.
Mobile Hits the Mainstream: Technology and Industry Trends (US$895) studies the trends shaping mobile travel worldwide, tracking mobile device adoption in key global markets. The report highlights emerging mobile technologies, identifying strategic opportunities for suppliers, intermediaries and corporate travel organizations. In addition, the research provides a closer view of the U.S. mobile travel market, sizing the U.S. mobile leisure/unmanaged business travel market through 2013.
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