Throughout the week we post dozens of original stories, connecting the dots across the travel industry, and every weekend we sum it all up. This weekend roundup examines digital trends.

For all of our weekend roundups, go here.

>>A genius marketing move or a waste of money that’s more flashy than effective? That’s the debate that many destination marketers are likely having as they wonder if Tourism Australia’s ad will be a huge win or a major interception: Tourism Australia’s Super Bowl Ad Launches Its Largest U.S. Marketing Campaign to Date

>>Little can stop Google Flights and Hotels from continuing to take market share because of Google’s speedy response time, enhanced focus on user experience, and position as a dominant search engine — except the looming threat of regulation: Travel Megatrends 2018: Google’s Product-Led Vision Is Bearing Fruit

>>The travel industry urgently needs operational software that normal people find intuitive, flexible, and powerful. Otherwise it will lose efficient early-career workers to other sectors that have superior tools: Travel Megatrends 2018: Back-End Travel Tech Gets a Design Renaissance

>>As we’ve noted before, as much as hotels and online travel agencies may not necessarily love one another, they certainly need each other. Their current love-hate relationship will certainly change, however, if and when other players like Airbnb or Google become bigger players in the hotel booking space: Hotel CEOs Reveal Strategies for Expedia, Google and Airbnb

>>Google is making it easier for travel shoppers to find and use its flight or hotel search through some design changes rolling out in the coming weeks. Watch out, Kayak and Skyscanner. Airlines and hotels will have to pay attention, too: Google Is More Aggressively Connecting Its Flight and Hotel Products

>>Big travel management companies usually operate with strict controls on how third-party companies can interact with their systems. This new platform from BCD Travel is a step in the right direction toward allowing travel managers to use more innovative solutions: BCD Travel Opens Its Platform for Simpler Integration With Startups

>>Many event tech providers have created platforms in recent years to offer planners a set of tools with unified access to data. As the industry embraces analytics and artificial intelligence, providing useful insights that empower decision makers, platforms will likely take on bigger importance: Event Tech Providers Are Ready for a Data Revolution

>>It seems that Priceline Group’s recent pullback from advertising on Expedia-backed Trivago may be a new normal. In a brutal move, Booking.com pulled almost entirely out of Trivago’s search listings in Germany and Italy in December: Trivago Forecasts Slower Growth and ‘Difficult’ Quarters in 2018

>>There’s no one-size-fits-all solution for meeting and event planners, so technology companies are offering a variety of different services to meet their needs: Event Tech Firms Want to Be Everything to Planners

>>India has many homegrown online travel players, but only a couple will thrive. MakeMyTrip will be one of the survivors, but it may take until 2022 for it to achieve profitability. Expect it to make more acquisitions and investments to consolidate market share: Profitability Is Not On the Horizon for India’s MakeMyTrip as Price Wars Take Hold

>>A year from now — or perhaps sooner — we wouldn’t be at all surprised to hear Expedia executives admit that hotels’ direct-booking campaigns were having more of an adverse impact than the company initially articulated. Hotels have taken back some control from Expedia, and its shift toward independent hotels has far-reaching implications: Expedia Acknowledges a New Balance of Power With Hotels in Direct Booking Challenge

>>Making it easier for travelers to book how they want, and simpler for travel managers to experiment with new technology solutions, has become a focus in corporate travel: New Tools and Platforms Are Changing Business Travel

Photo Credit: An Expedia sign in Indonesia on September 14, 2013. The company just reported its fourth quarter earnings from 2017. Michael Coghlan / Flickr