Microsoft brings a travel guide to your desktop with the new Travel app.
It comes pre-installed in Windows 8. Like other new apps in Windows 8, it is a Metro-styled app, built on simplicity and emphasis on content. It is a huge bonus for people who love to travel regularly.
Travel app provides a plethora of travel destinations to you for research.
You can select a destination and view its details like its famous attractions, flights, hotels, restaurants, etc. In fact, you can plan a complete trip based on the data provided by Travel app.
Launch the app by clicking on its tile in the Start Screen. The welcome screen flaunts a wallpaper sized photo of a random destination.
Apart from the wallpaper-sized image, the welcome screen has 2 sections.
- Featured Destinations – It lists cities all over the world that are worthy as travel destinations. Each tile represents a destination.
Clicking a tile revamps the whole app to display the details of the selected city.
There is a tile titled “More”, clicking on which lists all the destinations.
Panoramas – This section contains 360-degree full screen view of several destinations. Click on a tile to view its panorama. You can drag your mouse in any direction to view that side/angle of the panorama. Use your mouse scroll to zoom in or out of the photo.
A Destination in Detail
Once you select a city, the whole app turns into an attractive presentation of that destination. Details of a destination spread across several sections.
- Overview – This section gives you 3 tiles. Introduction tile gives a brief history of the destination and an overview of things to do. Click on the tile to view details.
There is a non-interactive tile that displays current currency conversion rate between your country and the destination country.
The third tile provides you a search mechanism to view flight schedules between your country and the destination.
- Photos – This section lists photos that flaunt the beauty of the destination. Click on a photo to view it in full screen mode.
A small caption at the bottom-right corner gives a brief description of the photo.
- Panoramas – You can view 360-degree photos of several places of the destination.
Click on a tile to view its panorama.
The panorama view acts in the same way as the welcome screen panorama. . You can drag your mouse in any direction to view that side/angle of the panorama.
Use your mouse scroll to zoom in or out of the photo.
- Attractions – View all the famous, worthy-to-visit places in this section. The list is presented in a tabular form, each entry containing a place name on the left side, and its type (museum, landmark, park, etc.) on the right side. Click on a tile to find its details, and directions to reach there.
- Hotels and Restaurant Sections – It is quite natural that you would want to secure a place to stay, and decide some places to try famous cuisines of the destination. These two sections satisfy those needs.
The Hotels section even provides a dedicated search page to find a desired hotel.
Each entry in the Restaurants section contains name of the restaurant on the left side, and its type (continental, regional, etc.) on the right side.
Click on a hotel or restaurant to view its details, ratings, specialties, photos, etc.
- Guides – This section lists several guides that provide you exhaustive information on the attractions, restaurants, nightlife, shopping places, etc. The tips and recommendations provided by these guides can aid you in planning your trip.
The search charm implemented by Travel app lets your search for destination cities. It provides you suggestions for destinations when you are typing in the search box.
As per its usual behavior, Travel app changes its interface to provide details of the searched city.
Travel app implements Share Charm to provide share functionality. You can share the Bing Travel link of the current destination through Share Charm.
As an example, I selected Mail app from the list of Share Charm apps, to receive the shared content.
Through Mail, I would be able to share a link to Rome, Italy to my friends.