DEVICES – Product news, launches and more – July 2013
The latest devices news, launches and more from around the travel, tourism and hospitality industry in July 2013.
Wednesday 31 July 2013:
- Campus Travel builds app for academic travellers. The Campus Mobile service by the Australia-based company (part of Flight Centre), created through Mantic Point in the UK, gives university and other academic institution employees a range of trip management tools on their smartphones.
- CityBot releases tablet app for Android devices. The application covers all nine cities that the CityBot service supports and has been optimised specifically for the device including itinerary management and mapping.
Friday 25 July 2013:
- Thomas Cook has joined forces with Toggle Mobile to offer customers free incoming calls while abroad via a SIM. The service is available in 220 countries and customers need to register their destination with Toggle Mobile once they’ve received the free SIM. The cards are also being loaded with £2.50 of free credit.
- Travelport has launched Travelport Mobile Agent for Worldspan. The application enables agents to access and change bookings while on the go via iPad, iPod Touch, iPhone and Android devices. The app has been downloaded 21,000 times since its launch in 2011.
- Smart Destinations has unveiled a mobile ticketing solution called Virtual Go Card. The technology works by delivering one virtual card to a mobile device with a QR code for access to all their preferred attractions. The mobile attraction pass features more than 450 US attraction partners.
- Mobile Travel Technologies (MTT) will develop mobile apps and mobile web for LAN and TAM Airlines. This initiative will be phased over the coming months.
Monday 22 July 2013:
- Transavia.com, the Dutch airline, recently launched mobile applications for iPhone and Android with Mobile Travel Technologies (MTT), a provider of mobile solutions for airlines. The apps “enable flight search and booking and enable the ability to add baggage, view promotions, flight offers, and manage bookings.”
- HRS, Europe-based leading hotel portal has integrated Google+ with its iPhone and Android app. With this integration, users will be able to make a booking faster — the app automatically retrieving profile information from Google+. Also, on the date of check-in, when a user is within 10 km distance from the hotel, the user will be notified with all details regarding the booking.
Thursday 18 July 2013:
- FlightView, the real-time flight information portal has added new features to its iPhone app and website. Users will be able to forward their itinerary confirmation email to email@example.com and the system will automatically add the itinerary to user’s profile (Tripit, anyone?). Also, the portal has expanded its airline coverage and lists nearly 90% of all airline seats in the world.
- We recently wrote about how Indian travel brands were maximising the reach during Indian Premier League (a cricket match series). Now, Tourism Australia has launched an iPhone app for people travelling to Australia to watch the Go Ashes series. The free-to-download app has information (city guides with videos, photos, places to eat and drink, maps, things to do) on five host cities – Brisbane, Perth, Adelaide, Melbourne and Sydney. The app also displays cricket news, stats, live scores, a fun cricket game, Twickets – all Ashes tweets in a feed.
Monday 15 July 2013:
- Jet Lag Rooster, the online tool to help combat jet lag from travel, has released an iPhone app that allows travelers to receive push notifications of the steps needed during a trip to prevent jet lag.
Tuesday 9 July 2013:
- GuestLogix inks a major deal with China’s largest airline. China Southern will buy the company’s devices, which will enable passengers to purchase inflight seat upgrades. GuestLogix also scored a coup by getting China UnionPay card acceptance.
Monday 8 July 2013:
- Cleartrip, India’s OTA has updated its Android app to allow users to book Indian Railway’ tickets. Users will have to complete a one-time sync process between Cleartrip and IRCTC account. After this sync, users will be able to book train tickets and check PNR status.
- Norwegian Cruise Line has launched a last minute cruise booking app for iPhone and Android platforms. Users will have access to limited-time, limited-quantity cruise deals that are exclusively available to app users. Users also have the ability to purchase the offer directly from their mobile.
Friday 5 July 2013:
- Air China, the national carrier of China has rolled out FREE in-flight wifi for one of its domestic flight. With this service, travellers will be able to access Weibo, email, stream videos and other limited internet services. However, the internet can be accessed only via laptops and tablets. Mobiles phones cannot be used to access this service. Whether the service will remain for free is unknown at this point.
- Jet Airways, India’s airline has launched its app for BlackBerry Z10 and Q10 mobile models. The app is available in the BlackBerry World store for free download. Using the app, users will be able to book tickets, check flight status, manage their JetPrivilege, receive promotional offers, share special offers with other users on BlackBerry Messenger (BBM), among other features.
Wednesday 3 July 2013:
- Thomson Holidays has developed a mobile digital assistant designed to foster relationships with its customers. Revealing details, Peter Long, boss of Thomson parent TUI Travel, says it starts to talk about the holiday once a customer has booked right through to when they get back. There are further plans to extend the service to act more like a mobile concierge and help customers plan their next holiday.
- Iloho brings its travel social network to Apple devices with new app. The free service gives users the ability to request and find information about destinations from others members on Iloho, as well as use of a messaging platform. The app uses the device’s GPS technology to help find fellow travellers in a location.
Tuesday 2 July 2013:
- Silversea Cruises has launched a service that streams movies and live television news to guests’ mobile devices aboard Silver Cloud. The complimentary service can be accessed on any Wi-Fi-enabled device. In near future, the company is planning to add international newspapers to its streamed media offerings, an option that is currently in the testing phase.
- Chujian, China-based mobile technology services company has launched QHotel, a mobile app that recommends hotels based on users preference/choice. List of preferences that a user can set include room comfort, hygiene, service quality, proximity to city center, facilties. Chujian was started by Zheng Nanyan, a former Ctrip executive, and former CEO of 7 DaysInn.
Monday 1 July 2013:
- Marriott Hotels has released a new mobile app as part of its continued investment in the brand. Functionality includes: Mobile check-in after 4 pm the day before reservation and up to two hours before arrival, automatic notifications when room is ready, and the ability to go directly to the Mobile Check-In desk to pick-up keys.
- WeHostels now reaches users on Android devices. The budget accommodation platform has been available on Apple devices for some time but the company says it has a “waiting list” of thousands of Android users waiting for the service. Android users will be able to search for around 40,000 properties in 800 cities. It will be available in seven languages, including English, German, French and Chinese.
- Copa Airlines has tapped NCR to deliver updated services for several products. Copa’s mobile site is now complemented with an NCR-developed iPhone app, which allows direct delivery of electronic boarding passes to passenger phones. In addition, NCR has provided the technology for email boarding passes and web-check in technology to drive kiosks, mobile and web.
- DEVICES – Product news, launches and more – June 2013
- DEVICES – Product news, launches and more – May 2013
NB: Multiple devices image via Shutterstock.
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