Science

Google To Cut Off Data To Third-Party Travel Websites

Google To Cut Off Data To Third-Party Travel Websites”

Google has announced the closure of an API used by the global travel industry in a bid to push business to its own Google Flights service.

Google acquired ITA Software Inc., an online airfare broker, for $700 million in 2011.

In 2014, Google created a cheaper version of the QPX software, called QPX Express, meant to target smaller companies and startups. Google shut that service down due to "low interest", according to a company spokeswoman.

"We chose to no longer support the QPX Express API given the low interest among our travel partners", a Google spokesperson said confirming the decision.

Google provides data on air travel from its search engine, along with a tool that enables consumers to get an alert when a price has dropped.

Services such as Kayak, which is owned by Priceline, and the UK's Skyscanner, which is owned by China's Ctrip.com worldwide, use the QPX API to conduct flight searches, alongside other APIs.

After acquiring ITA, Google improved its travel-search products. A spokeswoman for Priceline said the change won't affect the company's websites that offer flights. These two companies are among the most important customers of Google. They spend billions of dollars on online ads a year.

"The QPX Express API service will end on April 10, 2018", Google said in a notice on the FAQ page of its site for software developers.

The abrupt closure of a widely used API will nearly certainly stimulate renewed criticism of Google's increasingly powerful status as one of the "gatekeepers" of information on the internet, with the power to make or break businesses and even industries. It's giving the apps a few months to find other platforms for their program.

As the program closes, the rate reduces.

QPX Express is also no longer taking new users. Meanwhile, existing users have seen their usage fee reduced from $0.035 to $0.02 per query, following the free quota of 50 queries per day.



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