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99

Expedia brings an app to Windows Phone but only as a web wrapper

Expedia

Expedia.com is one of the most popular sites for planning vacations and trips. The site offers deals on hotels and flights for cheap, and it's one of those big, name brand services that many people know about.

The good news is that Windows Phone 8 users now have an official Expedia.com app. The bad news is it's just a mobile web wrapper, meaning this app simply pulls down the mobile web version of Expedia.com. Except you get more on the website, including cars and packages, which the web app obfuscates.

Expedia does have a full-fledged app on iOS, which is designed well with scrolling images of local deals. That means that the company took the easy way out with Windows Phone by making an app that simply routes to their website, preventing things as staying logged in to your account, quick access to support and an overall more enjoyable user experience.

Still, if you want an Expedia website-within-an-app, well, you can rest easy tonight as your wish has come true. We're still waiting for a native app.

Thanks, Barry W., for the tip!

QR: expedia

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Comments

There are 99 comments. Sign in to comment

Sam Sabri says:

Boo on apps that are just websites inside an app. Double disappointing since the Expedia HQ is right next to Microsoft. It was even a division within Microsoft before being spun off on to become its own company.

Aashish13 says:

Yes really its nonsense. I guess they have amateur developers.

 

They have a pretty good iOS app.  It's just that WP is way down on their priorities list.
 

Kanishk96 says:

Another company which does not have WP on priority list is Facebook. They released their snapchat rival slingshot on iOS and Android but not for WP.. what shit!!??

spaceOpia1 says:

... like the Youtube app...

Yousef Kawmi says:

Youtube app has a reason to be a web wrapper 

Rick Smits says:

Agreed, but it's a start.

Aashish13 says:

Even the official TED app is still a web wrapper

MikeSo says:

Usually it's an end too.

fahdriyami says:

Not unlike Pinterest!

MatchAttax08 says:

I'm making a website app

abdhoms says:

Maybe they're actually working on a native app but just put a web wrapper for the time being. I really hope that's the case.

That's usually not how it works, but hope springs eternal.

redtidal says:

My AT&T app gone from a dedicated app to a web app. Lousy UI.

sd173 says:

But does it have a transparent live tile option? ¦P

I'll download just to show there is interest

chad08er says:

Just plain lazy by the developer .

androidtoWM says:

don't blame the developer. blame the people who make business decisions (product managers cough cough). They are the ones who decides what to do. Developers just build stuffs based on 'stories'. If i'm told to put a web wrapper and i spend time building a native app, they gonna hire someone to replace me :(

 

aitt says:

Yah another Web Wrap

Posted via Windows Phone Central App

Firefox OS made a huge deal about webapps, but it seems like WP is delivering them. Most of the official apps these days are just web wrappers. :( I'd rather pin the website to my Start Screen than clutter up my app list with yet another shortcut.

Aashish13 says:

We also need Firefox browser app too. I know IE 11 is working fine we need other options too.

spinzeroWL says:

Firefox is rubbish. Has been for years.

SocalTouch says:

Completely disagree with you. While IE11 is my primary browser, Firefox is a very close second and the only option when you want add-one. Refuse to use chrome at all costs.

MikeSo says:

I'd rather just use a bookmark.

b23h says:

I concur, rather than create a link to my start screen.....

RobHalligan says:

I'd venture to guess that many to most smart phone and tablet users don't save or sync bookmarks - that they've gone all app icons. This appification of the internet is not good.

Wael Hasno says:

Take your "app" back, we deserve better than this crap. Someone make sure they see this article and read the comments.

Mogwaye says:

They can keep their crappy app. WP already have enough of them.

People should email the developers and ask for a native app.

I bet users on iOS dont stand for this kind of backhand nonsense.

Alphonz says:

Even the official Pinterest app is a web wrap.

MediaCastleX says:

EVERY company feels like the web browser version of their service is SO great, but they only bother spending money on IOS and Google apps... UNSAT! I think it might have been cheaper and easier to just code the pointed site icon and live tile to their website! I do not accept such chicanery, unacceptable but unfortunately it is better than nothing at all...USE USE USE Show these buttnuggets the numbers! >=/

Aashish13 says:

On ios. They still spend and earn more, not on google play unless google always them to create blot ware with their ad ons.

roguecroce says:

Why do famous names release web wrappers on WP8? They don't do it on Android or iOS, so why Windows Phone?

b23h says:

Look, it should be clear to everyone.   In a world where Android have seventy plus percent of the market, iOS around fifteen and we are at what four percent worldwide, we get webwrappers.

Now, one would hope that when we are at ten percent or more that these companies may (especiallly if we complain at that point) revisit their decision.

What's the phrase, "beggars can't be choosers".   Unfortuately at this point Windows Phone is beggars.

K Raghu says:

So now people wont by the phone because we dont have the WP apps. And people will not make apps because there is no marketshare. Some needs to spend some money to get these things moving. it can't be us... may be MICROSOFT...

MikeSo says:

They are trying I'm sure. Wouldn't be surprised if they paid for this web app. But getting apps out is about long term support, development and maintenance. Microsoft can't do that for a whole bunch of other companies.

b23h says:

Actually it can be us.   When I started to think about buying my first WP device I knew MS was behind in their application selection.   I bought a HTC HD7 for multiple reasons, but one of the big ones was to show support for the WP OS and to increase even if by a tiny fraction, WP's market share by buying in.

Certainly having a WP device and buying apps in the Store does in fact help.

K Raghu says:

b23h Got 5 WP devices... not sure how much more a invidual can contribute. that was when i believed in NOKIA now may wait for 6 months.. and if things are same may switch platform...

Ticomfreak says:

I got about 11 WPs between family and friends :P

Because a Web wrapper App can run at near native speeds on WP8.

 

This is part of Microsoft's push of HTML5 development and Web RIA migration to devices. There is no need for a native App if a wrapped website can provide essentially the same speeds and offer even more functionality.

 

The reason you don't see web 'wrapper' Apps on iOS or Android is the performance is a big hit as they don't even run close to native speeds.

 

Montpbm says:

This is just so stupid to not have a actual app instead of a wrapper.

MikeSo says:

Especially since the app has less functionality than the website it mimics. In IE11, you can save your login, and it has the additional booking options. At least give the same functions...

TechFreak1 says:

Exactly, this shows that this wrapper was an half assed attempt.

MikeSo says:

"if you want an Expedia website-within-an-app, well, you can rest easy tonight as your wish has come true"

LOL.

I hope Expedia has a working fire alarm, cause they just got BURNED.

 

It really stinks that not only is this a webapp but it has LESS functionality than the website. That's messed up.

I guess its better then the ms made webapp hopefully their web devs will collaborate to make sure it renders properly after they make any changes to the site

mshaw2k says:

I think it's great. It means that WP8 is enough in the radar to know they need an app. They will probably monitor downloads and decide from there.

b23h says:

It's a step forward.   Yes, at least they did SOMETHING.   Given our position in the market I can easily imagine the decision for a webwrapper.   That does not mean I'm thrilled about the decision, however it is something.   With luck as we gain market share later we'll get a real app.

Just a wild guess, but I would say that starting this November and extending approximately a year past the release of WP9 that if we haven't developed past 10% worldwide, we're screwed.   Let's hazard a guess and say December 2016 is our day of reckoning.

TechFreak1 says:

Well with BBM on the way, there wont be many reasons for corporations to choose blackberry. This should help drive the market share forward as only corporations and med to large business buy phones in large volumes.

felickz says:

Booooo come on Expedia, rewrite that win 8 app as a universal app

Wasn't Expedia a Microsoft product at one time? I use to book flights on there years ago.

Yeah back in the .net passport days(some mgs sites still use the login/forum ui)

chandy227 says:

My phone says it's a universal app.  Is there a native one on Windows 8?  I'm so confused.

kjblank80 says:

Sad that MS created Expedia, then spun it off as a separate company, then MS' phone OS gets the shaft with a web wrapper...

jlzimmerman says:

Better to have a web app than no app.

Marco Gomes1 says:

Why not just have a shortcut to the website on your start screen? At least then you'd have all the missing features.

CobraJ82 says:

How do we create a web wrapper app?

Luc4 says:

Maybe at least you can use it to get $25 off (although that non-eligble hotels list is huge so I guess it must be non-chain hotel):

"Save $25 using code MOBILE25 on your first hotel booking on the Expedia app of $100 or more! See details at: http://www.expedia.com/app"

larspassic says:

Web wrapper app with notifications and live tile / lockscreen support would be alright.

Hopefully this is just a start.

majortom1981 says:

They basically used microsofts web dev studio site.

elitelibra says:

Are the web app the same as a hybrid app that can take advantage of windows system. I'm confused at why companies dont just ask Microsoft for help to make the apps

klaw24 says:

To all the biggies publishing official apps as web page wrappers, bring a proper app or GTFO.

It's not even that hard to write WP8 apps. I would say that SDK is actually the best I've used. If you have a half decent back end, getting a WP8 app shouldn't be that difficult. Just lazy.

It's like every 2nd "App" on Android or iOS, that's just an packaged mobile Site...

Anubis4574 says:

Most apps are just web wrappers....they just fetch data from website and borrow similar mobile UI. Examples: YouTube, Facebook, ect.

NathanDuarte says:

If you can't put your effort to make a real app don't bother making a web wrapper crap

HHammack1 says:

You can keep your web apps folks. Nobody wants that crap. Make a native app or don't bother.

amd lover says:

Boo, nobody download. Like the famous Linus tech says, speak with your wallets, in this case just don't download. Shame on you Expedia, lazy move

afgzee says:

No, download rate 1 star and let them know what you think, then uninstall

JohnStrk says:

Most of our "official" apps are either web wrappers or beta. Pathetic!!!

diftor says:

If after 4 years of WP being put we're still getting wrappers, the situation is worse than most realize

Yep...

To advocate for the developers though, each WP version has used drastically different frameworks. Not API tweaks, but full fledged language changes.

I wouldn't want to develop a native app for a platform that changes its mind quicker than your younger cousin, hopped up on aderol.

I prefer orbitz but I believe that's a web wrapper too. Plus I can't use the filter scroll bars in it with my dell venue pro cause it just moves the screen... not the filter/bar.

I feel they need commended for making the first step... They can now review downloads and feedback comments and make the next version exactly what the WP community wants, rather than a ported version of the iOS version. We don't want to be a mimic, but a much better alternative!

k0de says:

C# that. I Agree!

diftor says:

Can I please have some of that delusional kool-aid?!

btgusto says:

I'll just let them know how i feel about that on twitter.  pinterest too

afgzee says:

So what's the point? No thanks.

reda igbaria says:

I think that they will soon make a new official Firefox app, but a web wraper!! :) stupid developers

Marco Gomes1 says:

I think no one should download it.

MikeSo says:

While I hate web app, I don't even understand why anyone would need this as an app (native or web) vs using the website. How often do people need notifications from Expedia? Or whatever a native app would do.

TechFreak1 says:

The world is transitioning to an app-centric world given the advent of tablets and hybrid 2 in 1's.

killer rin says:

It's better than nothing. Since they have a dev account and stuff on the store, they will be able to get more direct feedback and can be more easily persuaded.

swizzlerz says:

Better than nothing.

wozburger says:

Download it, give it one star & a terrible review, then delete it. Download stats show interest and reviews will show dissatisfaction.

Apoc says:

Downloaded and tried it. Just going to the mobile site is better, at least it does offer Hotels, Flights, Cars, & Packages(yet it will give you the option to call or Shop on full site). Did my part, tried the app and did submit a review, along with giving feedback on the site itself and app, asking when will they update the ability for must needed functions in this app.

No thank you.....

btbam91 says:

Worked well for me. Booked a couple nights in Boston for the 4th of July and saved $25. :)

I tried the same username and password that works on my PC version of Expedia.  It did not recognize the username which works on the PC.  I tried the alternative of using my email address and the same password.  It then let me on the "My Itinerary" page, but would not let me on the page I'd need to use to enter a new trip (itinerary).  The commenter before me says he booked a room and saved money so it must work for some Expedia users.  It must be a hit or miss thing.  Seems like a broken App (web wrapper).