Sabre Reaches Key Technology Milestone

Sabre Holdings Corporation
, has announced that it reached a milestone in the creation of its new travel technology platform with the initial migration of its massive air pricing application to the HP NonStop server platform.

The technology achievement is part of Sabre`s new Air Travel Shopping Engine (ATSE), a four-year program designed to migrate airfare pricing, schedules and availability from a proprietary mainframe system to the continuously available HP NonStop server and database environment. The powerful Sabre airfare pricing application continuously updates about 20 million fare and rule records and 1.5 million schedules providing users with the most current data in the industry. The program can rapidly evaluate billions of potential fare combinations for each requested origin and destination, as well as nearby airports that may yield lower fares.

“In our first 60 days using our new HP Nonstop servers, we had no downtime. This technology milestone reconfirms that we can achieve our goal to migrate a huge application with the scope and volume of air pricing from a mainframe environment to an open-systems midrange platform,” said Craig Murphy
, Chief Technology Officer, Sabre Holdings Corporation. “It`s the next step in our ongoing plan to migrate applications to open system platforms helping create the next generation of travel technology platforms for our customers.”

“Our relationship with Sabre is a prime example of how HP helps customers create and enable world-class, real-time enterprises for the most demanding business environments,” said Pauline Nist, vice president and general manager, HP NonStop Enterprise Division. “The NonStop platform provides Sabre with unmatched levels of availability and scalability in a high-performance, open system environment. We look forward to continuing our work with Sabre in implementing a variety of innovative solutions that will result in significant customer benefits and competitive advantage for Sabre and its partners.”

Using HP`s open system, Sabre is able to leverage mainstream tools and development techniques to rapidly develop new and unique shopping services. Sabre plans to implement several new shopping services within the next six months. The system enables Sabre to significantly speed overall development time. For example, the development for the air pricing application on the open system was done entirely in C++ and Java and was developed in an aggressive timeframe.


“We believe our open systems shopping platform will provide the only nonstop capability in the industry. In other words, virtually no downtime for our customers, scheduled or unscheduled. It`s the equivalent of changing a flat tire without stopping the car, as both airfares and schedule data are constantly updated while the system remains continuously available,” Murphy said.

Sabre has a long history as the leader in operations research for the airlines and travel industry in general. Borrowing from techniques used in large-scale optimization, the low-fare search algorithm can analyze several billion fare combinations, across dozens of connection points, in a few seconds. The search space includes flight schedules from non-stop up to four- segment connections, with a variety of parameters that allow the user to control what is displayed. Unlike other systems on the market, Sabre`s low- fare search checks airline availability in real-time, during the search, and displays a list of itinerary options that are known to be available for sale.

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