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Expedia plans GPS-driven iPhone app for booking hotels

March 30, 2011|By Terry Gardner | Special to the Los Angeles Times
  • Screen shot of interactive map on new Expedia Hotels app.
Screen shot of interactive map on new Expedia Hotels app. (Expedia )

Imagine four taps on an app, and you have a room for the night.  That’s what Expedia promises with its new iPhone/iPod Touch hotel booking app. 

Expedia plans to add the free Expedia Hotels app to the iTunes App store by mid-April and an Android version to the Android Market by the end of April.  An iPad version is expected to be released later  in the year.

Expedia Hotels works with your phone’s GPS to locate nearby hotels   Key features include:

-- An interactive map view that shows hotels in the area, with green pins marking those recommended by TripAdvisor, a user-reviewer website owned by Expedia.

-- Ability to search by price, rating, popularity or distance;

-- Summary of each hotel's features, with a slideshow;

-- Ability to get directions to the hotel you book, share your confirmation through email and import the reservation into your iPhone calendar.

One disappointment when I previewed the app: While it did display TripAdvisor ratings of hotels, it did not allow me to click on the ratings to read the reviews.

By the end of the year, Expedia plans to add an airline booking tool too, said Scott Durchslag, president of Expedia Worldwide.  

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