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Orbitz pushes Android hotel booking app in time for holiday travel

October 26, 2012

Online travel agency Orbitz is ramping up its mobile initiatives with a hotel booking Android application that lets consumers make reservations from their devices.

The Hotels by Orbitz Android app is available for free download from Google Play. The app was rolled out earlier this year for iPhone devices.

“There are a lot of great Android devices out right now that are really sharp with lots of capabilities and our hotel app is speedy and colorful for shopping on these devices,” said Chris Brown, vice president of product at Orbitz, Chicago.

“In the travel industry, mobile is changing consumer behavior,” he said.

Fly on mobile
Consumers who download the Hotels by Orbitz Android app can find hotels nearby by filtering search results by city, ZIP code or address. Search results can also be broken down by value, price or distance.

Consumers can also view additional information about individual hotels, such as photos, reviews, special offers and information about amenities.

The app includes a mobile steals section that lets users search for deals exclusively available on mobile with discounts up to 50 percent off of at select hotels in 250 markets. Mobile steals are indicated with an orange banner in search results.

Bookings are made by filling out information on three pages.

Last week, Orbitz promoted the app with a 72-hour flash sale in all of the company’s mobile apps. Consumers who booked hotels through the app got an extra 10 percent off of their booking.

Same-day check-ins
According to Orbitz, more than 65 percent of hotel bookings made via mobile are for same-day stays, showing how consumers are using their mobile devices to solve a pain point while traveling. Users are also increasingly relying on their devices to discounts on travel reservations.

Twenty percent of all of Orbitz’s bookings come from mobile, which is a significant increase year-over-year increase, according to Mr. Brown.

Earlier this year, Orbitz rolled out the iPhone version of the Hotels for Orbitz app (see story).

In addition to the hotel-specific app, Orbitz also offers a full-service app that lets consumers book flights, hotels and rental cars. The app is available for iPhone and Android devices.

Most recently, the company relaunched the full-service iPhone to focus on a streamlined booking process (see story).

As more devices enter the marketplace, Mr. Brown expects to see more activity with tablets this holiday season.

“With the iPad mini launch and some Android tablets that are out this holiday season, we will see a lot in tablet computing beyond the iPad,” Mr. Brown said.

Final Take
Lauren Johnson is associate reporter on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York

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Related content: Orbitz expands mobile booking presence with native iPad app, Orbitz revamps iPhone app with focus on streamlined booking, deals, Orbitz launches revamped mobile site, daily deals to capitalize on last-minute travel,

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