Well, isn't this amusing and scary at the same time: Orbitz is now starting to show visitors who use Macs different, often higher-priced rooms than their PC-based counterparts because the company's data shows that Mac users tend to spend more on their bookings. While it's easy to poke fun at Apple-ites -- are they gullible or simply high maintenance? -- the report also highlights a possible consequence of having all your online interactions driven by scads of big data.
The next time you go to book a flight on American Airlines, you'll have to do it outside of Orbitz, the popular online travel company. That's because American decided to pull its flights from Orbitz over a dispute that could impact online flight sales as a whole, according to an AP report.
Online travel companies like Orbitz receive a commission for flight sales originating from their website. In addition, American also pays fees to the global distribution companies that provide the flight information, and that's where things went south.
American wants Orbitz to pull that information from the airline, which American said would cut costs and allow it to make more personalized offers to travelers. Derek DeCross, American's VP for sales, said the airline needs to be "free to customize its product offerings to improve the customer experience as well as distribute its products in a way that does not result in unnecessary costs."
This was a costly move for Orbitz, which sought (and didn't receive) a court injunction to block American's departure. American tickets and related products accounted for around 5 percent of the site's total net revenue for the first nine months of 2010.
American Airlines tickets already purchased through Orbitz are still valid, the airline indicated in its related FAQ.