Skyscanner is somewhat of a Scottish success story. Founded in 2003, the travel search site, best known for its flight comparisons (though it’s branched out to include car hire and hotels), is reportedly on track to achieve an annual turnover of close to £30m, nearing £10m in profit. That’s likely been bouyed by a recent partnership it signed with the Chinese search engine Baidu.
And today, the company is announcing another impressive milestone: Its free mobile apps, which let users find cheap flights on the go and target iOS, Android, Windows Phone, and BlackBerry, have hit 10 million downloads — running up a rate of one download every five seconds (someone in the PR department obviously did their homework).
Available in more than 30 languages, Skyscanner says that its mobile offering accounts for about a third of the 30 million monthly visits to its site, although in Asia this is more than 50 percent, perhaps reflecting the high mobile penetration and usage in the region.
In addition, the most popular destination search for mobile users is the ‘Everywhere’ option, which enables all destinations to be browsed in order of price — perhaps proof that the casualness of mobile and serendipitous discovery go really well together.
Today also sees the Android version get a minor update: Users can now add flight searches to a widget to be displayed on the phone’s home screen to monitor price changes or destinations for a specific month or date.
Meanwhile, according to a report in the Scottish newspaper, Scotland on Sunday, next up for Skyscanner is to integrate its flight search technology with the rail systems of emerging markets.
The company is headquartered in Edinburgh, Scotland, along with a presence in Asia. However, it’s said to be eyeing up an office in the U.S., too.
Started by three founders in 2003, Skyscanner is a search engine technology company based in Edinburgh. The Skyscanner site aims to show users as many prices as possible and allow them to browse these prices easily. If they do not have the price for a particular airline, they make that clear so users can see all other options, and then, when they link to an airline or travel agent site, all the information already entered is transferred to...