Click here to close now.


Wearables Authors: AppDynamics Blog, Yeshim Deniz, Pat Romanski, Tim Fujita-Yuhas, Elizabeth White

News Feed Item

Surge In App Hurricane Sandy Bookings Shows More Consumers Go Mobile To Secure Emergency Hotel Rooms

NORWALK, Conn., Dec. 18, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- For's (Nasdaq: PCLN) mobile apps team, the sudden spike in booking activity beginning October 25th  was almost as telling as the weather reports that something major was about to happen in the northeastern U.S.

It was a scenario they'd seen before in 2011, when a freak October snowstorm left many without electricity and a warm place to stay.  Hurricane Sandy has just passed over Cuba and was churning toward landfall in the States.  Mobile-equipped consumers in the soon-to-be-affected tri-state area (New Jersey/New York/Connecticut) wasted no time firing up their Priceline: Hotels, Flights & Rental Cars(sm) app to secure safe lodging in advance of the monster storm. 

"Mobile devices are fast becoming an essential part of an emergency preparedness kit," said John Caine,'s Chief Product Officer.  "Finding accommodations in a weather emergency is usually a race for a limited number of rooms.  A phone book and a telephone can be a time-consuming recipe for disaster.  With an iOS or Android phone and the Priceline: Hotels, Flights & Rental Cars(sm) app, consumers instantly have comprehensive lists of hotels on-screen and can book those fast-disappearing rooms with just a few taps."

Looking at the combined booking activity for all three affected states, it was clear that speed in getting a room was important with Hurricane Sandy fast approaching.  On October 26th, bookings at hotels located within 5 miles of customers were running 67% higher than normal (Hurricane Sandy was still 3 days away).  By Sunday the 28th (the day before Sandy's landfall), those bookings were 129% above normal levels.

Demand for rooms was keenest in the affected parts of New York State, where bookings at hotels within 5 miles of customers were running 132% above normal on October 28th, and 142% above normal on the 31st.  Also on the 28th, bookings at Connecticut hotels within 5 miles of customers were 109% above normal, and 108% above normal further south in New Jersey.

As nearby hotel availability dwindled, customers broadened their search, despite deteriorating travel conditions.  On Friday the 25th, average bookings in the 3-state area at hotels between 5 and 35 miles away from customers were up only 22% above normal.  By Sunday the 28th, the more distant bookings were approximately 78% above normal.

In addition to the added miles, consumers were broadening their hotel star preferences in an attempt to secure rooms.  On October 24th, before the spike, the average star level requested by app customers was a 3.  By October 27th, it had averaged down to 2.91, then down to 2.61 on October 31st

By October 29th, landfall day in New Jersey, hotels in the affected tri-state area were under sell-out conditions, and the mobile booking trend data showed it.  Even for hotels between 5 miles and 35 miles away from consumers, the 3-state average accepted bookings from the app had tumbled to 32% below normal levels.  Availability of rooms had dried up, leaving some to wait out the storm and its after-effects at home.  Connecticut residents were hit hardest by the hotel shortage, with bookings on October 29th running 86% below normal for hotels within 35 miles of a customer.  Over in New York, October 29th bookings were 28% below normal levels for hotels within 35 miles of a customer.

"The Hurricane Sandy data indicates that mobile devices and apps are emerging as the 'go-to' solutions for consumers when emergency weather-related travel is required," said Caine.  "They are using these apps to help them be first in line for travel services.  And it now appears that, unlike the typical last-minute booking activity we see among mobile travelers, these customers are most definitely not waiting around to make their bookings.  In fact, our mobile customers may have been days ahead of the heaviest reservation request activity seen by area hotels."'s travel app, Priceline: Hotels, Flights & Rental Cars(sm), is optimized for the iPhone5 and is available for all iOS devices (iPhone, iPod touch, iPad, iPad mini).  It can be downloaded for free from the iTunes store also offers a version of the app, with hotel and rental car booking features, for Android, that can be downloaded for free from the Android market Travelers with other devices can access's mobile-friendly website at

The app enables consumers to make their travel reservations up to the last-minute from virtually anywhere.  In need of a hotel?  Travelers can choose from over 201,000 published-price hotels around the world.  They can also take advantage of Express Deals(sm), a new hotel service that saves up to 45% on hotel rooms without bidding. With Express Deals(sm), customers view a page that includes amenities (pool, gym, on-site restaurant, etc.), hotel star level, neighborhood, guest satisfaction scores, and a specially discounted sale price.  In many cases, customers can choose their bedding type (1 king, 2 doubles, etc.).  After booking at the discounted price, the name of the specific hotel is revealed.  Last-minute bookers also can try  Tonight-Only Deals(sm), a service only available on the app, saves up to 35% on last-minute rooms and names the specific hotel offering the deal.  How about a rental car? Choose from a variety of car types, brands and published-prices, or use's Name Your Own Price® rental car service to bid on a rental car. Customers with iOS devices also can book airline tickets on the app.

iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch and iTunes are trademarks of Apple, Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries. Android is a registered trademark of Google, Inc.

About The Priceline Group
The Priceline Group (Nasdaq: PCLN) is a leader in global online hotel reservations, with over 270,000 participating hotels worldwide. The Group is composed of four primary brands -,, and - and several ancillary brands. The Priceline Group provides online travel services in over 180 countries in Europe, North America, South America, the Asia-Pacific region, the Middle East and Africa. is the number one online hotel reservation service in the world, offering over 250,000 hotels (as of December 4, 2012), and is available in 41 languages. More recent hotel counts are available on the website. gives leisure travelers multiple ways to save on their airline tickets, hotel rooms, rental cars, vacation packages and cruises.

In addition to getting compelling published prices, travelers can take advantage of's famous Name Your Own Price® service, which can deliver the lowest prices available, or the recently added Express DealsSM, where travelers can take advantage of hotel discounts without bidding. is an Asia-based online hotel reservation service that is available in 38 languages. is a multinational car hire service, offering its reservation services in over 6,000 locations. Customer support is provided in 40 languages.


More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

@ThingsExpo Stories
The buzz continues for cloud, data analytics and the Internet of Things (IoT) and their collective impact across all industries. But a new conversation is emerging - how do companies use industry disruption and technology enablers to lead in markets undergoing change, uncertainty and ambiguity? Organizations of all sizes need to evolve and transform, often under massive pressure, as industry lines blur and merge and traditional business models are assaulted and turned upside down. In this new data-driven world, marketplaces reign supreme while interoperability, APIs and applications deliver un...
The Internet of Things (IoT) is growing rapidly by extending current technologies, products and networks. By 2020, Cisco estimates there will be 50 billion connected devices. Gartner has forecast revenues of over $300 billion, just to IoT suppliers. Now is the time to figure out how you’ll make money – not just create innovative products. With hundreds of new products and companies jumping into the IoT fray every month, there’s no shortage of innovation. Despite this, McKinsey/VisionMobile data shows "less than 10 percent of IoT developers are making enough to support a reasonably sized team....
There are so many tools and techniques for data analytics that even for a data scientist the choices, possible systems, and even the types of data can be daunting. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Chris Harrold, Global CTO for Big Data Solutions for EMC Corporation, will show how to perform a simple, but meaningful analysis of social sentiment data using freely available tools that take only minutes to download and install. Participants will get the download information, scripts, and complete end-to-end walkthrough of the analysis from start to finish. Participants will also be given the pract...
Today’s connected world is moving from devices towards things, what this means is that by using increasingly low cost sensors embedded in devices we can create many new use cases. These span across use cases in cities, vehicles, home, offices, factories, retail environments, worksites, health, logistics, and health. These use cases rely on ubiquitous connectivity and generate massive amounts of data at scale. These technologies enable new business opportunities, ways to optimize and automate, along with new ways to engage with users.
The IoT market is on track to hit $7.1 trillion in 2020. The reality is that only a handful of companies are ready for this massive demand. There are a lot of barriers, paint points, traps, and hidden roadblocks. How can we deal with these issues and challenges? The paradigm has changed. Old-style ad-hoc trial-and-error ways will certainly lead you to the dead end. What is mandatory is an overarching and adaptive approach to effectively handle the rapid changes and exponential growth.
Internet of Things (IoT) will be a hybrid ecosystem of diverse devices and sensors collaborating with operational and enterprise systems to create the next big application. In their session at @ThingsExpo, Bramh Gupta, founder and CEO of, and Fred Yatzeck, principal architect leading product development at, discussed how choosing the right middleware and integration strategy from the get-go will enable IoT solution developers to adapt and grow with the industry, while at the same time reduce Time to Market (TTM) by using plug and play capabilities offered by a robust IoT ...
Mobile messaging has been a popular communication channel for more than 20 years. Finnish engineer Matti Makkonen invented the idea for SMS (Short Message Service) in 1984, making his vision a reality on December 3, 1992 by sending the first message ("Happy Christmas") from a PC to a cell phone. Since then, the technology has evolved immensely, from both a technology standpoint, and in our everyday uses for it. Originally used for person-to-person (P2P) communication, i.e., Sally sends a text message to Betty – mobile messaging now offers tremendous value to businesses for customer and empl...
Can call centers hang up the phones for good? Intuitive Solutions did. WebRTC enabled this contact center provider to eliminate antiquated telephony and desktop phone infrastructure with a pure web-based solution, allowing them to expand beyond brick-and-mortar confines to a home-based agent model. It also ensured scalability and better service for customers, including MUY! Companies, one of the country's largest franchise restaurant companies with 232 Pizza Hut locations. This is one example of WebRTC adoption today, but the potential is limitless when powered by IoT.
You have your devices and your data, but what about the rest of your Internet of Things story? Two popular classes of technologies that nicely handle the Big Data analytics for Internet of Things are Apache Hadoop and NoSQL. Hadoop is designed for parallelizing analytical work across many servers and is ideal for the massive data volumes you create with IoT devices. NoSQL databases such as Apache HBase are ideal for storing and retrieving IoT data as “time series data.”
Clearly the way forward is to move to cloud be it bare metal, VMs or containers. One aspect of the current public clouds that is slowing this cloud migration is cloud lock-in. Every cloud vendor is trying to make it very difficult to move out once a customer has chosen their cloud. In his session at 17th Cloud Expo, Naveen Nimmu, CEO of Clouber, Inc., will advocate that making the inter-cloud migration as simple as changing airlines would help the entire industry to quickly adopt the cloud without worrying about any lock-in fears. In fact by having standard APIs for IaaS would help PaaS expl...
SYS-CON Events announced today that ProfitBricks, the provider of painless cloud infrastructure, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. ProfitBricks is the IaaS provider that offers a painless cloud experience for all IT users, with no learning curve. ProfitBricks boasts flexible cloud servers and networking, an integrated Data Center Designer tool for visual control over the cloud and the best price/performance value available. ProfitBricks was named one of the coolest Clo...
Organizations already struggle with the simple collection of data resulting from the proliferation of IoT, lacking the right infrastructure to manage it. They can't only rely on the cloud to collect and utilize this data because many applications still require dedicated infrastructure for security, redundancy, performance, etc. In his session at 17th Cloud Expo, Emil Sayegh, CEO of Codero Hosting, will discuss how in order to resolve the inherent issues, companies need to combine dedicated and cloud solutions through hybrid hosting – a sustainable solution for the data required to manage I...
NHK, Japan Broadcasting, will feature the upcoming @ThingsExpo Silicon Valley in a special 'Internet of Things' and smart technology documentary that will be filmed on the expo floor between November 3 to 5, 2015, in Santa Clara. NHK is the sole public TV network in Japan equivalent to the BBC in the UK and the largest in Asia with many award-winning science and technology programs. Japanese TV is producing a documentary about IoT and Smart technology and will be covering @ThingsExpo Silicon Valley. The program, to be aired during the peak viewership season of the year, will have a major impac...
Apps and devices shouldn't stop working when there's limited or no network connectivity. Learn how to bring data stored in a cloud database to the edge of the network (and back again) whenever an Internet connection is available. In his session at 17th Cloud Expo, Bradley Holt, Developer Advocate at IBM Cloud Data Services, will demonstrate techniques for replicating cloud databases with devices in order to build offline-first mobile or Internet of Things (IoT) apps that can provide a better, faster user experience, both offline and online. The focus of this talk will be on IBM Cloudant, Apa...
WebRTC is about the data channel as much as about video and audio conferencing. However, basically all commercial WebRTC applications have been built with a focus on audio and video. The handling of “data” has been limited to text chat and file download – all other data sharing seems to end with screensharing. What is holding back a more intensive use of peer-to-peer data? In her session at @ThingsExpo, Dr Silvia Pfeiffer, WebRTC Applications Team Lead at National ICT Australia, will look at different existing uses of peer-to-peer data sharing and how it can become useful in a live session to...
As a company adopts a DevOps approach to software development, what are key things that both the Dev and Ops side of the business must keep in mind to ensure effective continuous delivery? In his session at DevOps Summit, Mark Hydar, Head of DevOps, Ericsson TV Platforms, will share best practices and provide helpful tips for Ops teams to adopt an open line of communication with the development side of the house to ensure success between the two sides.
SYS-CON Events announced today that IBM Cloud Data Services has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 17th Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. IBM Cloud Data Services offers a portfolio of integrated, best-of-breed cloud data services for developers focused on mobile computing and analytics use cases.
"Matrix is an ambitious open standard and implementation that's set up to break down the fragmentation problems that exist in IP messaging and VoIP communication," explained John Woolf, Technical Evangelist at Matrix, in this interview at @ThingsExpo, held Nov 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
WebRTC has had a real tough three or four years, and so have those working with it. Only a few short years ago, the development world were excited about WebRTC and proclaiming how awesome it was. You might have played with the technology a couple of years ago, only to find the extra infrastructure requirements were painful to implement and poorly documented. This probably left a bitter taste in your mouth, especially when things went wrong.
The broad selection of hardware, the rapid evolution of operating systems and the time-to-market for mobile apps has been so rapid that new challenges for developers and engineers arise every day. Security, testing, hosting, and other metrics have to be considered through the process. In his session at Big Data Expo, Walter Maguire, Chief Field Technologist, HP Big Data Group, at Hewlett-Packard, will discuss the challenges faced by developers and a composite Big Data applications builder, focusing on how to help solve the problems that developers are continuously battling.