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Lonely Planet digital innovation continues

For Immediate Release: 20 October 2009

Lonely Planet digital innovation continues As Kindle ships across the globe…

Lonely Planet is among the first travel guide publishers to have products available for Amazon’s (AMZN) Kindle e-reader as it ships internationally this week.

“Lonely Planet is excited to make over 600 travel guides available by book or chapter from Australia to Zanzibar to Kindle customers around the world,” said Lonely Planet CEO Matt Goldberg. "Our goal is to be an indispensable source of information to travellers wherever they are and consumers can now pack as many Lonely Planet guides as they want into Kindle’s 10.2 ounces and download new guides wirelessly while travelling around the world."

Already the world’s number one guidebook publisher, Lonely Planet is also continuing to accelerate its digital business across online, wireless and emerging platforms.

Hatching a killer app – work with us

Lonely Planet is opening its doors to developers by hosting its first Hack Day in Australia 7-8 November 2009.

Media and developers are invited to join the teams responsible for the development of, the Lonely Planet mobile apps and the new Lonely Planet Open Social Platform at the Lonely Planet headquarters in Footscray, Melbourne, to spend 48 hours generating new technologies with prizes up for grabs.

“Fresh on the heels of a massively successful mobile hack day in London (, and our own internal hack day we’re opening our doors for developers to joins us playing with our new API, our new Open Social platform and our rather funky content, images and maps. This is a first for Australia and for Lonely Planet,” said Matthew Cashmore, Lonely Planet’s Innovations Ecosystems Manager.

For the full story:

Early days with Google Wave

Trippy, Lonely Planet’s experimental collaborative trip planning gadget was featured as part of the Google Wave beta launched recently.

Google Wave was made available to around 100,000 beta testers who have found planning a trip with friends and family easy and interactive. Trippy loads a map of a location that contains Lonely Planet recommendations and reviews. Using a simple drag-and-drop interface, users can easily select points of interest and assign dates and times to them to quickly create rich itineraries for their upcoming trips.

“Google Wave enables a new form of communication where participants can have interactive discussions in real time. The Trippy gadget turns trip planning into a collaborative activity, enabling a group of users to create itineraries together in real time,” said Chris Boden, Lonely Planet's Director of Mobile & Innovation.

Watch the Trippy demo:

Cool new augmented reality city guides for Android users in the US

Imagine taking in the sites of a city using recommendations from Lonely Planet that appear as virtual sticky notes through the video viewer on your phone. Sounds sci-fi, but it’s real.

Lonely Planet is the first travel publisher in the world to make new ‘augmented reality’ products available for Google Android handsets launching a series of Compass Guide applications to highlight points of interest in cities.

‘Augmented reality’ is new technology that melds real-life views with overlaid digital information as tags delivering a sensory experience that feels real. The handset’s GPS capability determines the exact location a person is standing, while an internal compass determines the direction the user is looking.

“Augmented reality provides consumers with an exciting new way to view and interact with location-based travel information and we are thrilled to be first to market with a collection of augmented reality city guides for travellers in the US to explore using their Android handsets,” said Chris Boden, Lonely Planet's Director of Mobile & Innovation.

Compass Guides are currently only available in the US and are sold via download from the Android Market for US$4.99. The current city list includes: Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Miami, New Orleans, New York, San Francisco.

Lonely Planet worked with Austrian developer Mobilizy to make points of interest in city guides compatible with augmented reality technology.


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