This week the team at ICE ICT returned to London for Travel Technology Europe. It is always an interesting show for us with some great discussions and this year was no exception. As independent technology advisors, we were especially pleased to see that our six steps to procurement advice had struck a chord with so many companies struggling to negotiate the jungle of technology providers in the industry. And no wonder, you only had to walk through the hall at Travel Technology Europe to get confused and overwhelmed, with so many providers each promising to offer something that will seriously change your business for the better. We spoke to a number of people who felt more confused after walking around than before they arrived.
Innovation was a key theme this year and our CEO, Ian Richardson, joined a panel where the results of Travolution’s Innovation Report were announced. One of the most striking findings was the sudden surge in software spend. Ian believes that this is likely to be largely attributed to mobile applications and mobile friendly web services. Indeed, the rise in mobile applications and the challenges companies are facing with implementing them was a big discussion point during the session. Big data also came up as a major factor for the travel industry and an area filled with opportunity as the industry learns more and more about their customers. As Ian pointed out, mobile apps are about giving consumers what they need when they want it, and the only way to do that is by collecting enough data to know what it is they want and exactly when they want it. The panel also discussed the need for the travel industry to invest more in engaging with the consumer whilst in the resort and again mobile apps are a good way to do that. However, Ian commented that with space a premium on most people’s phones, the real winners will be those companies that integrate their content into already popular multi-function mobile apps such as WeChat and WhatsApp.
You can read the full Travolution report here.