As you may remember, Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG) has acquired ITA Software in July 2010 for $700 million. ITA Software is the provider of flight data for many travel websites including Kayak.com, Farelogix, Sabre Holdings, and Expedia. These companies are also forming a coalition called FairSearch.org in order to persuade the Justice Department to block the deal.
These companies are arguing that Google will dominate the online air-travel market by having lots of power over the software. Google said that they will be able to provide useful information to consumers when searching for flight data.
Expedia runs Hotwire and TripAdvisor, Sabre runs Travelocity, and Kayak.com runs SideStep. All of these websites depend on ITA. Microsoft search engine Bing.com also relies on ITA data. “Google has tremendous power in the search market, and it gives Google the ability to steer users in directions that are best for Google,” stated Expedia lawyer Thomas Barnett. “All of that would ultimately end up harming consumers.”
[Wall Street Journal]