The Hotel and Travel Week

Monday, 4th July 2011

International tourist arrivals increase by 4.5% in the first 4 months of 2011, compared to the same period last year, despite of the still lingering recession and increased oil prices in many parts of the world. This is the result of a survey carried out by the United Nations World Tourism Organization. South America (increase of 17%), South Asia (14%) and Southeast Asia (10%) see the largest increases. Only the Middle East register a decrease of 14% and so does Northern Africa with 11% because of the ‘Arab Spring’.
Tuesday, 5th July 2011

Google shuts down Realtime Search as their deal with Twitter expires. The deal dated back to late 2009 when both parties agreed that Google would show realtime Twitter results in Google searches. On Tuesday Google announced via Twitter that it had temporarily shut down its Realtime Search service while working on the company’s new Google+ social networking attempt. Apart from that, Google or Twitter say little why the deal has ended.
Wednesday, 6th July 2011
 
Online travel agency Orbitz releases its first iPad application on Wednesday. Users can book hotels and airfare with the application which features tools not available in the iPhone app. According to Orbitz: ‘The new Orbitz Hotels App for iPad delivers the entire selection of Orbitz hotel properties, refined comparison tools, and secure booking in just 3 taps.’
The application can be downloaded for free at: Orbitz Hotels App for iPad

Thursday, 7th July 2011

StumbleUpon, a bookmarking and sharing engine, is now the biggest traffic driver among social media websites in the U.S., according to web analytics service StatCounter. StatCounter say that the company overtook Facebook during June 2011. StumbelUpon, which finds and recommends relevant web content and calls itself the Discovery Engine, was founded in 2001 and sold to eBay for $75 million in 2007. StatCounter tracks hits to over 3 million websites. Its social media data is gathered by analyzing every hit originating from a social media site.
Google announces that Google+ brand pages will be launched in 2 weeks time. Similar to Facebook brand pages, Google will also offer pages on it’s new social networking service Google+. Companies can apply and Google will approve brand pages according to how successful companies have been with social media in the past. The first brand page is already online, though: Ford on Google+. Apparently, thousands of companies have already applied and Google is overwhelmed by the interest.

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