Google has had a long regulatory battle trying to get its acquisition of ITA Software approved. In April, it got DoJ approval. Just last month, Google finally launched Flight Search, as it was able to use the technology it acquired from the $700 million purchase.
Bloomberg is reporting today, however, that the purchase has only just been approved by a federal judge. Tom Schoenberg reports:
U.S. District Judge Robert Wilkins in Washington today approved a consent decree between Google and the Justice Department that allows the acquisition as long as Google makes travel data available to search-engine rivals and lets the government review any complaints it’s acting unfairly. Wilkins said he found the agreement to be in “the public interest.”
With Google’s Flight Search feature, Google adds a “Flights” link on the left panel when the user searches for flight info. The feature can also be accessed from google.com/flights.
Google said upon launch that it would be working hard to improve the number of cities and types of flights it shows, though for now, users can only see a limited number of cities and results for round-trip economy-class flights.