TripAdvisor Acquires EveryTrail, Hikes Up Mobile Path

February 3, 2012

TripAdvisor announced the acquisition of EveryTrail, the developer of a GPS-enabled publishing platform to create outdoor tours and city guides for mobile devices.  No information was offered on the terms of the acquisition, but the results raise high expectations. With this acquisition, the millions of TripAdvisor users that access more than 40 million traveler reviews and opinions on hotels, restaurants and attractions, will benefit from an enriched quality of travel information via smartphones.

“Every day, more people are opting to use mobile apps as a way of consuming travel information,” said Adam Medros, vice president of global product for TripAdvisor. “EveryTrail bolsters our continued commitment to grow TripAdvisor’s mobile offering, and enable travelers to access walking tours, city guides and hiking trails directly from their smartphones.”

TripAdvidor’s move towards the mobile area started last year in March when they incorporated apps for the iPhone, Android, Nokia, Palm smartphones and iPad. A few months later TripAdvisor forged a strategic partnership with Facebook to use social media as a marketing tool, allowing Facebook users to see their friends’ recommendations for trip destinations, accommodation or attractions.

Travel is a very competitive domain at the moment and this is backed by TripAdvidor’s latest attempt to increase website traffic by calling users to post reviews of America’s 10 dirties hotels.  Additional competition from major search engines keeps TripAdvisor and other niche travel services on thir toes.  Google and Microsoft are continuously to merge travel into their offerings, layering in more features to their own search portals.

In mid-2010 Google acquired ITA for $700 million, but a few months later travel sites such as TripAdvisor, Travelocity and SideStep took a stand to prevent Google from purchasing ITA.  Google responded to claims of monopoly by stressing that it intends to provide relevant results for flight data and does not intend to sell tickets.  Microsoft is also in a sensitive position, as it uses ITA data for travel searches on Bing.