Archive for the ‘farecasting’ Category

Google buys ITA Flight Search Software.

Wednesday, November 23rd, 2011

Google’s aquisition of ITA software, a powerful flight price comparison engine, may eventually add a huge new twist to the flight search space although Google’s current position is that they won’t enter this market as a competitor, rather as a more helpful and user friendly search routine for flights.   It remains to be seen how Google will implement this tool over time, but it’s probably bad news for what in QuickAid’s view is the best current player in this market, Kayak.com.    We’re not sure but believe that  ITA already powers Kayak’s search.

This from Google:

On July 1, 2010, Google announced an agreement to acquire ITA Software, a Cambridge, Massachusetts flight information software company, for $700 million, subject to adjustments.

  • Google’s acquisition of ITA Software will create a new, easier way for users to find better flight information online, which should encourage more users to make their flight purchases online.
  • The acquisition will benefit passengers, airlines and online travel agencies by making it easier for users to comparison shop for flights and airfares and by driving more potential customers to airlines’ and online travel agencies’ websites. Google won’t be setting airfare prices and has no plans to sell airline tickets to consumers.
  • Because Google doesn’t currently compete against ITA Software, the deal will not change existing market shares. We are very excited about ITA Software’s QPX business, and we’re looking forward to working with current and future customers. Google will honor all existing agreements, and we’re also enthusiastic about adding new partners.

 

Google Press Release and Video on the ITA Aquistion: http://www.google.com/press/ita/

YAPTA cheap fare search using "wisdom of crowds"

Saturday, September 22nd, 2007

Yapta is trying to be “Your Amazing Personal Travel Assistant”, using the collective wisdom of thousands of other Yapta subscribers to find cheap fares. I have not used the service yet but it’s a neat idea in that it could harvest information from a large number of travelers and then work to “optimize” their experiences based on all the extra info. Unfortunately many such efforts can get bogged down when it comes to monetizing the enterprise. For example if Yapta knows that your best travel day would be Tuesday with a Saturday layover but the Yapta advertisers want them to book more Friday departures there can be a subtle shift in focus. This is even happening at Google where the shading on advertising is slowly diminishing, blurring the distinction between “organic” and ad results.

But good luck Yapta! If you provide unbiased air travel info from a broad sample of air travelers you could be on your way to success.