Increasingly travel companies revert to iPads and other tablets to inspire travellers to dream of their next vacation. Within their mobile strategies, the smartphone however has been largely neglected as an efficient tool for raising awareness, as the travel sector approached mobile predominantly as a potential sales and conversion channel
However, as reported by Skift, a recent PhocusWright survey among 2,200 US travellers in the fourth quarter of 2013 revealed that 26% respondents used their phones for both destination selection and shopping. This finding is particularly surprising when compared with only 20% of respondents, who used tablets for the same tasks. While the research was not representative for all western markets, it clearly indicates a trend. Namely the acceptance of mobile as a channel across all stages of the travel cycle
New requirements for smartphone apps and mobile sites
Travel companies clearly have to pay a lot of attention to tablet apps because consumers are multi-device creatures, and now nearly one out of every two travellers owns a tablet.
But when it comes to smartphones — with screen sizes getting larger in the past couple of years — travel companies need to account for the fact that phones are increasingly being used to sort destinations, get inspired and to shop.
Thus mobile responsive websites need to incorporate good quality images in order to facilitate inspiration. In particular the ongoing roll-out of 4G internet connections opens up new opportunities for incorporating long and rich media content into smartphone apps and mobile websites.
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