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Addicted to travel: Travelling to undergo revolution

Express News Service

With more and more things getting automated/outsourced, we will all be travelling four days a week. You will no longer go to Ooty to see Nilgiris, but to relive your first date there, says Prashant Chothani, CEO of TravelXp channel

HYDERABAD: Not just your travel, even the way you watch travel shows on screens is going to change drastically,” predicts Prashant Chothani, CMD & CEO of TravelXp channel. Travel seems to be on the verge of undergoing a revolution. He must be an expert as his channel reaches 75 million homes worldwide with its hardcore travel shows.

“We all used and loved the sturdy Nokia mobile phones from 2005 to 2012. But now, once we got used to the high-end smartphones, we all have got hooked to it and do not want to go back to the simple and easier phones (remember no keyboards and no touchscreens), even though they are efficient. TV watching, especially travel shows, are now available on cutting edge clarity. Travelxp is the first Indian channel to launch in HD and once you get used to watching it in HD, your eyes will refuse to watch any other clarity. Now, we have entered Canada with 4K HDR technology and our audience are bound to feel the difference,” says Prashant. 4K HDR is going to be a game changer on the telly front. HDR or High Dynamic Range is for 4K TVs and 4K content.

The term refers to a technique to heighten a picture’s range – the contrast between the brightest whites and the darkest blacks. Elaborating, he says, “4k HDR contrast is superior. It replicates the vision of the eyes and what you see on screen is as good as what you see in reality. So imagine watching a show on the Himalayas and the experience feels immersive, which is what a travel channel should aim for.” Calling it the next big thing in TV viewing, the media company head said that soon our TV sets and set-top boxes will change to be able to accommodate 4K HDR. Or you can also watch it on high-speed broadband. By 2020, we can see numbers growing from SD to HD.”

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Right now, we only tell our friends and families when we are travelling. In a few years, we will be telling them when we are NOT travelling because travel will become a way of life. Like we are addicted to our phones and selfies, we are going to get hooked to travel.” Prashant believes that it will be possible with more things automated and work getting on a ‘remote mode’, we will see more and more people working and travelling at the same time and using high speed connectivity to their advantage.

Holidays, he believes, will merge with your life and memories. “No longer will you be going to see just the mountains or the beach. On the contrary, you will be going to the place where you first met your girlfriend. Your wife and children will get to see the town where you first started working. Travel will intertwine with life.”

Experiences are the next big things in travel. So you will be visiting the Alps for wine tasting and to Ooty for a cheese weekend. There will also be takers for holiday resorts with phone jammers as digital detox holidays will be in demand. “People will be using so much of technology that a holiday away from all of it sounds like heaven”, he adds. There could be a time where we all work for four days a week and travel the other days of the week. “In about five years, don’t be surprised if Artificial Intelligence systems check your bank and leave balance and chalk out your holiday calendar and even buy the best deal tickets for you. Autobots will prepare your itinerary,” he quips. Travel sure is getting exciting.

 — Manju Latha Kalanidhi kalanidhi