Travel Tech and Trends to Get Excited About in 2012
WiFi while traveling is a game changer and we all know it. In 2011, there sure was lots of excitement in this area, and we expect the ante to be raised in 2012. More and more flights will have this, as it no longer is seen as an “extra”, but rather internet at 30,000 feet above ground has become considered a necessity (as crazy as that sounds!). For hotels, it’s not a question of just offering WiFi, but more what level of bandwidth should be available. With the proliferation of smartphones and tablets, the always-connected traveler is starting to demand superior connectivity. Also, increasingly, WiFi hotspots are even coming to cars, having already been announced for the 2012 Chevy Silverado and 2012 Ford Focus. And how can we forget this awesome little product: the Apple Airport Express
Smartphones will continue to change the way we travel. Whether it’s ordering cars in an unfamiliar city (via Taxi Magic, Groundlink or Uber) or ordering food in an airport (B4youboard) we’ve seen some amazing innovation in 2011, but there is still room for improvement. One area we would really like to see improvement in (and predicting there will be) is the mobile boarding pass. We have started to see the promise of this technology but it isn’t quite there yet. We can’t wait for the day when all airports and all airlines have mobile boarding pass screeners (and they actually work!). While simple, the ability to book and receive our tickets on our phones will greatly enhance the seamlessness of day of travel.
Our favorite to research and predict though are gadgets for travel. After looking through hundreds of new travel gizmos, it’s impossible to predict which will have the biggest impact. One clear trend was in the innovation of extending the life of our precious electronics. Whether it’s solar powered, AA battery powered, or just an extra case, we are always trying to squeeze a bit more juice for our devices (and then smugly look at those hovered over the electrical outlets at the airport).
Lastly, we came across two AWESOME products for those that enjoy traveling in comfort. Firstly, no longer do you have to leave your trusty Tempur-Pedic set at home. Secondly, are you one of those wine lovers who are never totally comfortable leaving home without your favorite bottle of wine? What better way than having a bag specially designed to carry and protect those bottles. This bag will let you sleep easier up in the cabin, as you know those bottles you wanted to share with a friend are safe.