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Piles of newspaper and old magazines are no longer an issue for Virgin Australia and their airline lounges, as they’re getting ready to go digital. We’re sure some periodicals will be kicking around in paper format for quite some time, but we still think their latest move is pretty darn clever.
It sounds like visitors to the Virgin Australia lounges down under will soon have access to well over 2,000 different publications thanks to PressReader. Basically you’ll connect to the wireless network, fire up the app, and then start perusing plenty of newspapers and magazines from nearly 100 countries across 50 languages. Local favorites like The Australian and Gold Coast Bulletin are available, but feel free to digitally flip through the Los Angeles Times as well. They promise complete digital replicas of each and every edition, and often things are available through PressReader before they hit the newsstand.
Google Maps / Travel Technology / Winter Travel / Active Travel / Android / iOS / Skiing / Ski Travel / → All Tags
In case you missed it we’re in the middle of the winter, and pretty much everyone has been hit with the snow—especially those in the northeast. It’s definitely time to take a break from the shoveling and plowing, and make your way onto the slopes. Skiing down the mountain is way better than playing with the snow in your driveway, and now Google is even here to help you find your way.
Adding to their mapping empire, Google just recently revealed that they’ve got the scoop on a whole bunch of ski resorts. Their latest addition boosts their offerings by another 38, as they add to their collection of ski resorts and mountains across the United States and Canada. Different lines indicate lifts, trails, difficulty, and even the path to the best hot toddy by the fire. Okay—maybe not that last part, but we wouldn’t be surprised if that was buried in there somewhere.
Airport Restaurants / PHX / Airport Food / Travel Apps / Android / iPhone / Airports / Airport News / → All Tags
We’ve got a good feeling that many of you will find yourselves at the airport at some point during the holiday season. It may be on your way to visit friends and relatives, but we’re even more hopeful that you’re at the airport flying somewhere fun to avoid friends and relatives.
No matter how you end up at the airport you’re going to need a bite to eat while you’re wandering the terminals, so thankfully HMSHost and their food-from-your-phone technology is back with a new airport and new restaurants.
To many people - critics and investors alike - Google may seem like a privacy-violating advertising platform built that has some really innovative search and social media technology. But the Mountain View company wants you to know they're committed to being so much more. It's not just that they harvest all of the data based on the information you seek and the people with whom you interact. They also want to be know where people travel, where people eat, and where people shop.
Or more precisely: Google already knows where people do all of those things (the company even published a nice infographic of where Americans traveled last summer). What the search giant actually now wants to know is where you travel, eat, and shop. And to get its hands on that data, it's going to help you. "Help."
Airport WiFi / Google / Boingo / Android / Travel Tech / WiFi / Airport News / Technology / Airports / → All Tags
Huzzah—that’s what would be saying if Google was truly getting into the WiFi business, but for now we’ll just settle with the fact that they’re teaming up with Boingo. They’re partnering up to offer up around 4,000 WiFi hotspots for free, and thankfully that includes plenty of locations that do their thing at the airport.
Technically Google Play—the go to spot to buy Android apps—is sponsoring this latest giveaway, so unfortunately you’re out of luck if you’re looking to connect with your iPhone.
Airport Restaurants / Airport Food / Travel Apps / Android / iPhone / Airports / Airport News / → All Tags
Thankfully for our taste buds there doesn’t seem to be a shortage of restaurant options popping open at airports across the globe. And while there’s no new celebrity chefs putting their finishing touches on terminal tables and concourse chairs this week, there are a few technology tidbits.
HMSHost—known for creating and serving airport delicacies—is at it again with their gate delivery service. They’ve expanded their reach into Utah, as they’re now offering up free delivery at Salt Lake City International Airport. The B4 You Board app is now serving up stuff like a chicken and pork souvlaki plate from Greek Souvlaki over in Terminal 2. In case you don’t remember how things work, all you have to do is browse menus on your mobile device, place your order, and then it will be delivered right to you at the gate. We just remind you to take it easy on the tzatziki, as we’re not sure about the odor of Greek yummies at 35,000 feet.
In-Flight Entertainment / Boeing / 787 / Boeing 787 Dreamliner / Qatar Airways / Android / Travel Tech / → All Tags
If you haven’t had the pleasure of flying aboard the Boeing 787 Dreamliner just yet that may be a good thing, as future flights could include jelly beans and ice cream sandwiches. Of course we’re not talking about in-flight meals, but rather the different versions of the Android operating system.
Boeing recently showed off that the little Android critter has infiltrated the in-flight entertainment system of some of their new 787s. Specifically, a Qatar Airways plane demoed an Android-based entertainment system, as it sounds like Android will be the system of choice for a couple of different entertainment providers. Both the Thales TopSeries Avant and the Panasonic eX systems are scheduled to utilize Android up in the air, and it’ll eventually be found in as many as 850 planes.
It’s kind of like the timeless airline debate—window or aisle—but when it comes to mobile technology; Apple or Android can cause some serious discussion. In case you missed the big Apple shindig a couple weeks ago, there’s all kind of new technology heading down the portable pipeline. However, the big news for travelers is that Apple is getting into the mobile mapping business, and that means that they’re ditching Google Maps as the default option for their iPhones, iPads, iPods, and pretty much everything else.
Of course like with any Apple product there’s all kinds of secrets, so we’ll have to wait to get the new maps into our hot little hands before we can give a full review. However, Apple has been gobbling up other smaller companies and licensing technology. We wouldn’t be surprised to see three-dimensional flyovers, turn-by-turn directions, traffic updates, and maybe even some other tech tidbits. One thing that we are sure about, is that there’s going to be some pretty decent integration with existing apps and the iOS software as a whole.
Airport Restaurants / Airport Food / Travel Apps / Android / iPhone / MSP / Airports / SMF / Airport News / JFK / ORD / → All Tags
Total laziness—we mean convenience—is on its way over to Sacramento International Airport, as HMSHost introduces their tasty travel app to hungry travelers. We’ve already mentioned how ordering up lunch, dinner, or just a snack is an option at airports like MSP, JFK, and ORD, but now the fun has arrived at SMF.
Esquire Grill or Burgers & Brew are the two initial offerings available through the B4 YOU BOARD app. Salads, cheeseburgers, and even macaroni and cheese are available at your fingertips, and then things will be delivered right to your where you’ve parked yourself near the gate. It sounds like the serving hours are scheduled between 10:30am and 6:30pm each and every day, so you might just have to order the old fashioned way if you’re looking for some breakfast.
Travel Tech / iPhone Travel Apps / Android Travel Apps / Android / iPhone / TSA / Airport Security / → All Tags
If you’ve already battled your way through Angry Birds Space, then we might just have another app for you. Unfortunately, it’s not exactly a game, but it’s pretty darn neat if you’re sick and tired of being felt up and pat down at the airport security line.
The FlyRights app is available in both iPhone and Android flavors, and its sole purpose is to provide travelers a direct line to the TSA complaint department. Now, when you suspect that the airport security officials are going above and beyond in an unnecessary way, you will be just a few clicks and swipes away from letting someone know.
The app is specifically targeting passengers who are being unnecessarily screened or profiled based on their personal this, that, or the other thing, and it’s all made possible from the people over at The Sikh Coalition.
In-Flight Entertainment / Android / Travel Tech / In-Flight WiFi / Travel News / WestJet / → All Tags
Late last year we heard about a new in-flight entertainment idea that would put a little bit of fun right into your tray table. Well it looks like the suits and salespeople over at Skycast Solutions are pretty darn convincing, as they’ve already signed on WestJet to utilize their new product. Things look slightly different from the initial concept we first checked out, but the final product isn't too shabby.
"TrayVu Slim" is the name of the new device, and if all goes well, it’ll be clipped on before too long. It’s basically an Android tablet—a 8.9” Samsung Galaxy to be specific—that will be distributed by flight attendants, and you're invited to attach it right to your tray table. It’ll flip up and open towards the seat back, so you’ll still be free to play a game of gin rummy with your seatmate while resting your Diet Coke.
We warned you it was coming! Social photo-sharing app Instagram launched today for Android and, while it's still totally free and available for download, its capabilities don't yet match the full functionality that iPhones enjoy with the app. Don't worryit's all still coming. Better now download (right here), get your username reserved and start following people to see how it works. Shameless plug for our own accounts: jaunted, hotelchatter, vegaschatter.
Of course the introduction of the Android app will mean an influx of new users, so goodbye 27 million and hello...270 million? Of course all the new users won't just be Android, but more iPhone users as well as word spreads.
We're psyched. We're psyched that more people can now share the photos they've traveled for and spent time on. We're psyched for you guys to see ours as well. We're psyched for the future contests and opportunities that Instagram does so well.