Business travelers want mobile, Expedia picks up Mobiata

I guess Expedia is watching the market. The online travel agency just snapped up mobile travel application developer Mobiata. Mobiata’s claim to fame is FlightTrack, and the other apps in its portfolio include TripDeck, HotelPal, FlightBoard and FareCompare. For Expedia, it was a no-brainer, as 4 percent of its traffic is coming from devices, a number the company would like to kick a bit higher, according to TechCrunch.

Beyond the fact that it gets more reach and better footing in the mobile space, Expedia’s Mobiata acquisition is interesting in light of a recent Deloitte survey. Business travelers are increasingly turning to their smartphones to research and book travel. The global professional services firm reported that 63 percent of business travelers earning more than $150,000 a year have web-enabled smartphones. Twenty-six percent of survey respondents, Deloitte said, have even downloaded hotel apps to these devices.

Given this trend in business travel, an important market for the travel industry, Expedia’s pickup makes good sense. The big question: who’s next?

[photo by Ed Yourdon via Flickr]

FlightTrack 4 updated with seat maps, flight alternatives and more

FlightTrack, my all-time favorite mobile application just got better – In addition to its arsenal of flight tracking tools, the new version adds a much cleaner interface, a delay forecaster and instant access to SeatGuru seating charts.

The tracking feature now also lets you search for alternative flights and information about diverted flights – something that will (sadly) come in quite handy this holiday season.

FlightTrack is available for iOS, Android, Blackberry and Palm WebOS. The new features are currently only available in the iOS and Android version. The Pro version of FlightTrack adds TripIt synchronization, push alerts, terminal maps and FAA notices about airport delays and closures.

To compare the various features, head on over to

One more excellent reason to invest in this excellent application – all purchases made before 11:59PM on November 23, 2010 will help support Mercy Medical Airlift thanks to a 20% donation from each purchase.


GMaps Flight Tracker: Track Flights with Google Maps

Whenever the three words, Google, maps, and mashup grace my screen, I get excited. What’s cooler than real-time flight tracking on everyone’s favorite mapping software? Not much. Well actually, there is — I’m still waiting for a usable Google Maps weather mashup (with radar)…but I digress.

From our sister-site Download Squad: “This Google Maps mashup tracks the status of inbound flights scheduled to land in Atlanta, Boston, New York’s JFK, LA, Miami and San Francisco. Pick your city, and a list of the arriving flights are displayed. Click or mouse over the airline flight number of plane icon and the altitude, speed and heading coordinates are displayed as well as flight trail waypoints so you can check out the travel path.”

The mashup even gives you the option of downloading the data as a KML file, that way you can import it into Google Earth and track the flights in 3D. Wicked cool.