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NEW YORK (Reuters Life!) - With air fares remaining stubbornly high, more people are taking to the road for summer getaways, making them more likely to need on-the-go travel resources.
Travel giant Orbitz has launched an app which is billed as the only online travel company iPad app to enable GPS-powered mobile research and hotel bookings.
Orbitz CEO Barney Harford said the new app was designed "from the ground up to take advantage of iPad's format and interface."
He added that it will allow customers to search for, compare and book hotels effortlessly.
In developing the app Orbitz noted its survey results which showed that more than half of the 1,000 people questioned said their mobile device was the most helpful for researching and planning activities once they arrived at their destination, compared to one-third who find it most helpful before they leave.
Only 15 percent said their mobile device was most helpful for booking vacations. And interestingly, more than one-quarter of men said they had booked travel with a mobile device, compared to only eight percent of women.
Mobile device users are also many times more likely to be booking same-day accommodations than people using the original website.
The app includes hotels at thousands of destinations worldwide available on Orbitz' website, which boasts 10 million visitors a month, and filters hotels by price, ratings or location.
It also allows users to locate nearby hotels using the iPad's GPS capabilities, and to compare hotels and prices on an interactive map.
Early reviewers praised the app for its accuracy, imagery and clarity, and functionality.
The Orbitz Hotels app is available as a free download from the App Store or here
Reporting by Chris Michaud; editing by Patricia Reaney; For the latest Reuters lifestyle news see: www.reuters.com/news/lifestyle