Considering Booking Holdings' close relationship with Google historically, it's no surprise that Priceline went with Google Cloud for its generative AI integrations. Now, who's next?
Priceline is implementing generative AI from Google Cloud in several areas of its business.
The online travel agency, owned by Booking Holdings, said Tuesday that it is integrating the technology in its consumer-facing platform and internally. Deployments are expected to begin this summer.
Priceline plans to release a chatbot, being built with Google Cloud’s Generative AI App Builder, that uses conversational AI to help customers plan trips. It will include the ability to book a trip directly within the chat tool, the company said.
The company said that the chatbot will be able to answer specific questions such as, “What are the best four-star hotel options in midtown Manhattan within walking distance to Central Park?” and “Can you help me extend my hotel reservation for an additional night?”
Priceline also plans to release AI-powered technology for hotel bookings meant to help customers find places according to specific interests, such as their proximity to local attractions, restaurants, and activities. Displayed on a map view on the hotel’s details page, the customer can see those nearby places and view AI-generated descriptions about them.
Internally, Priceline plans to release a marketing platform that generates written copy and images for use across all company channels. It will be used to develop destination marketing emails, for example, as well as better personalize campaigns and improve app notifications.
Like some other travel companies, Priceline also plans to use generative AI to aid with software development, meant to enhance automation and developer productivity.
And the company is building a tool to help make internal searches more efficient for Priceline employees. Once deployed, employees should be able to more easily locate resources, such as how to update direct deposit information or view benefits.
“Priceline is charting a course to transform the novelty of generative AI into lasting value for our customers and our business. We believe it’s not just about having the latest technology; it’s also about practically targeting innovation to the right challenges and opportunities,” said Marty Brodbeck, chief technology officer of Priceline, in a statement.
The majority of generative AI partnerships in the travel industry have been with OpenAI, the maker of ChatGPT. Besides the latest Priceline announcement, the other exception is eDreams Odigeo, which said last month that it would be partnering with Google Cloud to integrate generative AI into its own technology.
Priceline said it chose Google for a number of reasons, including “overall security, practicality, speed, and ease-of-use.” Booking Holdings has historically had a close relationship with Google, with Booking spending billions each year on advertising through the search giant and the two having worked on several projects together in the past.
This is the third generative AI partnership that a Booking Holdings company has announced. The first were when Kayak and OpenTable designed a booking plugin for the ChatGPT website. This is the first time, however, that a Booking Holdings company has announced such intricate plans to integrate generative AI into its business.
Though generative AI technology is still in early stages, executives of many large travel companies have said they see the potential for disruption and are working on implementing it into their businesses. Some, like Expedia and Trip.com, have already released experimental chatbots on their websites to gather data as they look to strengthen capabilities.
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Photo credit: Priceline is implementing generative AI from Google Cloud. Pictured: Hong Kong. (Source https://pixabay.com/photos/hong-kong-city-traffic-lights-1990268/) David Mark / Pixabay