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Airport Chatter - Social Utility in Airports

Mobile Airport App Helps Travelers Navigate Terminals

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Airport Chatter is a new mobile airport app providing social networking features to flyers using major metropolitan airports. The free airport application launched at the end of 2012 and is available for the iPhone, iPad and other Apple iOS devices.

Bottom Line: This airport app has potential but really only becomes useful after a lot of people start using it. By early 2013, Airport Chatter's functionality was promising but still fairly limited because of its small user base. That said, Airport Chatter is an innovator in the still emerging category of social travel.

What IS Airport Chatter and What Does It Do?

The Airport Chatter mobile travel app is designed to provide people waiting in airports with localized information about terminals and their surroundings, including Wifi, carryout food, sit-down eateries, stores and of course flight gates and ground transportation.

The airport app also invites travelers to provide reviews of airport features to share information with other flyers, especially in real time.

Airport Chatter aims create a sense of community eventually by clueing everyone at particular airports to who else is there at the same time, so they might find folks to chat with or even hang out with. The airport app still has its live social networking features under development, though, so they were not fully operational at launch.

In the future, the social aspect of travelers reviewing restaurants and sharing information about restrooms could make Airport Chatter a more useful app, although there were not a ton of reviews at launch time.

How Airport Chatter Works

Travelers sign into Airport Chatter with their Facebook login.

The Airport Chatter app included information about 30 different airports when it launched in December 2012, and had plans to expand over time to include many more.

The app is optimized for the iPhone 5 and requires iOS 6.0 or subsequent versions of Apple's mobile operating system. Airport Chatter is available in the iTunes app store.

Rival Airport Apps and Mobile Travel Apps

Competitors in the mobile travel apps include GateGuru, another airport app that provides reviews and profiles of airport venues and features, along with basic flight information and services.

Another interesting mobile travel app is TravelNerd. An even broader mobile travel app is RouteHappy.

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