October 4, 2012

Google Flight Search Gets Tablet Friendly

Google is expanding its flight-search technology to tablets, giving a finger-friendly makeover to its growing travel service.

If you use an iPad, Nexus 7, or other Android tablet it is now much easier to navigate the menus and choose from among flight options.

The Flight Search service is pretty good at finding competitive deals. It does not match some of my favorite travel sites/apps, such as Hipmunk or Kayak, but in the past it has helped me find a lower cost flight.

You choose each leg of your trip, then are presented with a combined price. Instead of booking directly through Google (something I am sure they have at least thought about) you are taken to a third-party site. Your booking with the outside site is noted as an ad, giving some insight into how Google is monetizing the service. The bottom of the page also includes links to conduct the same search with other services, such as Orbitz.

The search engine uses your location to automatically pick a local airport, then offers up some popular destinations to choose from. Each flight then has substantial data, such as price trends, number of stops, and flight duration. It works rapidly in a mobile browser, giving some very impressive load times on both an iPad 2 and Nexus 7.

Google’s Flight Search service is the result of its previous purchase of ITA Software, which specializes in travel technology and products.

Image Credit: Google Flight Search

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