Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Google to launch travel meta-search in April according to unsubstantiated rumour

I heard an unsubstantiated rumour today. Someone told me something they heard from someone else that may know something. The rumour is that Google will be launching a travel meta-search product in the US next month (April). Now, let me say up front that this is nothing but rumour and I have not vetted it to anywhere near the levels of confirmation that a journalist would (may Kevin forgive me). Thought this would be a good chance to test out the power of the blog audience. Have any of you out there in blog land heard anything about Google going into travel meta-search in the coming weeks? Bing's doing it, maybe everybody should.

thanks to "This is a wake up call" for the great photo via flickr

11 comments:

samdaams said...

I'm pretty sure Google flat out denied it last week at Phocuswright at ITB. Then again, Google has a long history of saying one thing and doing something else shortly after... :)

Tim Hughes said...

@samdaams - that would be consistent with Rob Torres flat out denial at PhoCuWright in Orlando about re-doing Froogle or equivalent.

Steve Sherlock said...

actually i got a call from Larry...............

though would be interesting to see what they'd come up with. likely pretty innovative.

maybe apple should have a go too!

Anonymous said...

I called on of my contacts at a major US hotel chain and they confirmed that they are under a Non disclosure agreement with Google and could not elaborate........which was their way of confirming that Google is up to something. They also made a reference to Google's recent development of a mortgage comparison service https://www.google.com/comparisonads/mortgages#ti=0

Anonymous said...

Seems real this time; my sources (reliable) say launch confirmed for April - at least one major OTA in at the start along with some major airlines & chains. There's been discussions with a large GDS; don't know if anything got signed.

And it's travel, not just hotels.

Guess the guy who wrote this might want to revise it

http://gigaom.com/2010/03/11/kayaks-projected-market-cap-more-than-705m/

Happy Hotelier said...

Are we sure they are launching this the first of next month?

Paul Fisher said...

I guess it would make sense. After all, metasearch is, well, search. Google have made it clear that they're going deeper into search. And let's face it, they certainly know a thing or two about the CPC/CPA game.

martin said...

And their biggest global competitor ie Bing already has travel meta-search

Google has already got a mortgages vertical:

https://www.google.com/comparisonads/mortgages#ti=6

Most interesting question is where any Google meta-search offering will sit in the organic results. Can't immediately see it for the mortgages product.

Paul Fisher said...

Perhaps this is what it was all about:
RT @mashable: Google Testing Hotel Prices in Google Maps - http://bit.ly/aiisxx

Tim Hughes said...

@HH, @martin and @Paul - thanks for comments and links. Though there are still few facts behind this rumour, I am feeling that it is a real chance of being true.

Either way it is a good story - got my first TechCrunch link out of it

http://bit.ly/cg1SDk

Paul Fisher said...

More fuel to this story. Google to buy travel distribution company ITA Software? That would put the cat amongst the travel metasearch pidgeons: http://bit.ly/9UWMdu