Travel Innovation and Technology Trends 2015
This free publication is sponsored by Sonata Software.
For technology futurists, this is a great time. We are able to observe in real time how new technology affects and improves our lives, enables new business opportunities, and allows new and different kinds of human-machine interaction. In addition, many of the essential catalysts for technology-enabled growth – e.g., large numbers of highly educated people, rapid pace of technological discovery, globalization, and relative political stability – are at their strongest point yet in human history.
The keys to business and personal progress in this tech-enabled era are connectivity and interoperability. Connectivity is already very high – there are mobile phone accounts for 96% of the people on the planet, and approximately 40% of the global population has Internet access. This connectivity is rapidly becoming the foundation for the global economy – and leveraging hyper connectivity for business value has just begun.
In travel distribution, marketing and IT executives need to look at new technology-enabled business opportunities through the eyes of venture capitalists – evaluate potential and risks and rewards; manage tech initiatives with a portfolio approach; and create a mix of shorter- and longer-term initiatives with varying ROI. Travel sales, which totaled $1.3 trillion in 2014, are expected to rise 6% in 2015, and competition will be intense. This year's Travel Innovation and Technology Trends pinpoints the biggest trends that businesses need to consider before making their next technology investments.
For the first time, this year we identify a "super trend" that incorporates two subtrends. While each subtrend would be unlikely to shift the trajectory of the travel industry on its own, together they represent a major direction. The focus of 2015's trends: the customer and the trip experience.