Kenya: Yellow Pages Develops Free Mobile Travel Guide Software


International and local tourists will from January be able to search and access basic information about places of interest on their smartphones .

Yellow Pages Kenya Limited has made this possible with a new traveller's application software running on android platform that it would make available on Samsung's Galaxy tablet computer, iPhone and iPad. The application will enable travellers to check out hotels with their preferred delicacies, taxis services in particular localities and entertainment spots, among others.

The platform is currently undergoing fine tuning tests before its is released to consumers early next year for free download from mobile phones applications stores.

The company provides travel guide directory on hard copy, but it says the electronic version would not only provide users with an easy option but also eliminate the need of using the Internet since the application would be downloaded and stored on the smartphones for reference.

The Yellow Pages managing director, Rizwan Jiwani, said it took the company five years to put together the content on the visitors' guide and this was mainly motivated by the realisation that most tourists depended on maps or wildlife check lists provided at most game parks with not only very little information but also difficult to obtain.

"There is no enough free travel information both for local and international tourists, however, with this app, travellers can now search for information by area or street," said Jiwani.

"We haven't signed contract with any of the handsets manufacturers yet, however, this should be through by December and the application made available in their stores in January."

Even though Yellow Pages intends to offer the content available on the application for free, it expects to generate revenue through advertisement from hospitality industry. This includes the hotels and restraurants who will have an opportunity to place their content on the platform. Other than exposure, the tourism industry would also benefit from feedback from their clients.