Innovative Business Models in Tourism and Hospitality: Going Mobile?

Innovative Business Models in Tourism and Hospitality: Going Mobile?

Sonia Ferreira Dias (Escola Superior de Hotelaria e Turismo do Estoril, Portugal) and Victor Alves Afonso (Escola Superior de Hotelaria e Turismo do Estoril, Portugal)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-9936-4.ch009
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Information and communication technologies had a significant impact throughout the tourism industry, raising a new generation of consumers who discover the potential of technology, especially mobile, to create more attractive tourist experiences. For this reason, there is a need to understand better the new tourist business models resulting from the use of the latest technologies, as an answer to these “new” consumer demands. Therefore, it will assess which business models are most efficient to the success and revenues of mobile travel applications (MTA). The tourist market progress in the last years had serious impacts from the latest technological developments. These changes impact directly the touristic business and new business models have emerged as a response to the arrival of a wide range of new technologies, mainly in the mobile area. Another important factor was the spillover effect that these changes had in the market of MTA. So, it is pressing to understand which models are more viable, why they are a success and how they generate revenues.
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The “Mobile Tourism” Phenomenon

Smartphones transformed consumer behaviour (Emek, 2014) that are now more connected, anytime and anywhere. This phenomenon is only possible due to the new smartphones capabilities to support thousands of applications that extend widely would represent a significant value their functionality (Wang, Park, & Fesenmaier, 2012). Smartphones are not just communication devices, but an extension of their personality and definition as human beings (O’Donohoe & Grant, 2007).

The mobile applications development has been on the rise ever since the appearance of the very first app store in July 2008, the Apple Store. In three years, it was anticipated that mobile services and the applications, which were then emerging, would represent significant value in the digital market (Portolan, Zubrinic, & Milicevic, 2011). In the following years, with the growth of smartphones and mobile applications use, this market segment has become a significant success in the history of consumer technology (Kennedy-Eden & Gretzel, 2012). The achievement was only possible by the fact that new technologies users quickly adhere to new concepts and services, as a reflection of their efficiency carrying out daily tasks. As such, the integration of smartphones in daily habits produced a spillover effect, and they became part of all spheres of consumer life. Is was, incorporated even in the most common tasks of everyday life as simples purchases, information search, daily commute and also tourists behaviour (Dan Wang, Zheng Xiang, 2014), bringing an extensive set of changes to the industry (Mo Kwon et al., 2013).

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