An alternative world which can be found ‘through the looking glass’, is set to revolutionise the travel industry thanks to the increase in innovative wearable technology. For example, the introduction of Google Glass and Sony Smartwatches are making getting the latest travel information and even booking a hotel almost instant.
Google Glass is a wearable computer with an optical head mounted display – or in layman’s terms, they are very clever eyeglasses! As small and discrete as a regular pair of glasses, Google Glass can perform all the functions of a smartphone by either swiping and tapping on the glasses or by using voice commands.
While Google Glass has only had a limited public release so far, more and more companies in the travel sector are scrambling to trial the technology. Virgin Atlantic has recently completed a six week trial of Google Glass with their Upper Class customers at Heathrow airport. The airlines supplied Google Glass to customer service staff which enabled them to check in passengers, receive up to the minute information about a passenger’s travel itinerary and details on the weather expected at the destination. Feedback from both staff and passengers was very positive and a wider reaching rollout of the technology currently being assessed by Virgin Atlantic.
In the meantime, the interactive eyewear is also targeted as a new way to let travellers perform hotel searches and make reservations. A number of companies are starting to create apps that can utilise this new technology to enhance the travel experience. One such app is called Hotel Near me, which claims to be the first hotel booking app for Google Glass.
According to the developer of the Hotel Near Me app, their first user in April was the first person in the world to book a hotel solely using Google Glass.
Google Glass displays useful information in the wearer’s field of vision and this booking app lets users find the closest hotels to their GPS position, see photos and hotel information, filter by price and then book the hotel.
So what’s next? No one knows for sure, but if you blink you might miss it!