World Travel Market presents the latest research findings from EyeforTravel that look at the significance of mobile technology for the travel industry. The Technology Futures press event took place today from 1330-1430 hours in the Conference Set, Platinum Suite 4. A panel chaired by Ginny McGrath, assistant travel editor, Times Online, will include Chris Carmichael, ba.com’s innovation and planning manager and Pablo Alvarez of lastminute.com, commenting on the important role of mobile in the future.
Craig Moyes, managing director of World Travel Market, said: “One of the key areas of rapid change is mobile technology and World Travel Market has identified it as potentially the most important new platform for the future of the travel industry. Airlines and travel brands have already embraced the mobile to help streamline travel and give the consumer access to better and more efficient services in transit. Businesses will be able to learn about why the mobile will take center stage in the near future at the Mobile Technology Conference on Tuesday at World Travel Market.”
British Airways recently launched their new ‘Way to Go – On the Go’ mobile facility for check-in. Chris Carmichael, British Airways innovation and planning manager of ba.com said, “We are proud to be the first UK airline to offer a remote check-in service in 11 languages. We recognize that our customers have busy lifestyles, and by offering greater accessibility, we hope to enhance their overall travel experience.”
Pablo Alvarez, group innovation manager of lastminue.com, agreed, “About a decade ago the travel industry saw the rapid evolution of their business to online; mobile technology is already at the heart of the next travel industry evolution as “mobility” is inherent to the essence of travel. Mobile technology is already giving a further dimension to travel; expect new innovative services – some new, some disruptive – to arise from this evolution.”
The latest findings from EyeforTravel identify future trends in mobile travel technology as today’s mobile users number 3 billion. The Mobile Data Association’s latest statistics revealed this month that 217 million text messages are sent in Britain alone today, on average 60 million more a day than the same time last year. The key question being asked is how ready the industry is to embrace mobile challenges and opportunities, which will complement existing sales channels before overtaking them.
Amy Scarth, head of EyeforTravel research said: “Mobile is a new interactive touchpoint in the buying cycle and the industry needs to tap into the vast mobile penetration. The reduction in the cost of mobile internet and development of applications has facilitated its growth. Our role in association with World Travel Market is to ensure there is education and understanding in the industry to show businesses how to use this technology to stay ahead of the curve and not get left behind.”