Google has recently launched Google Flights, the outcome of its acquisition of ITA.
( This post includes a number of images. Please click through to view the images in full size.)
Upon launching Google Flights, Gogle displays flight options out of a city ( presumably by your current location. I have received SFO probably because I am out of the presently supported region ) with average fares, on a map.
Presently Google Flights provides you with the ability to search U.S domestic flights only, however international flights can be expected soon.
Once you perform a search for a particular route, it provides you with a listing of flights sorted by the time of departure.
When you select one of the flights, you are then asked to select the return flight (given that you book a round-trip)
And then for booking the flight, Google automatically opens your itinerary on the selected airline's official website very conveniently.
Upon further inspection this appeared to be that Google will only open automatic booking for airlines that it partners with ( in this case American ). This is what I received for a flight with a carrier that is not partnering ( means - not advertising with Google Flights ). Or another possibility is that the selected airlines do not interline with each other. It however still lists links to the relevant airline websites.
I am not sure what is the reservation technology used by Google to cooperate with the selected airline's IBE ( please leave a comment if you do ) or about the exact revenue model Google has in mind ( is that via ads displayed for booking the flights ? ). But nevertheless, it surely will make travellers life more easier and should help airlines to lower their distribution costs too.