If you are doing some last-minute Christmas shopping for the traveler in your life, why not take advantage of Lonely Planet’s $0.99 special on its 25 augmented reality Compass City Guide Android apps.

The guide publisher has reduced the price of these these apps to $0.99, from $4.99 per download, until Dec. 25, 2010.
So if you happen to land in Chicago and amble by 430 North Michigan Ave. or thereabouts you might want to point your Android smartphone in that direction using Lonely Planet’s Compass City Guide.

When you gaze through the phone’s camera you are likely to glean information about Billy Goat Tavern.

The windowless, subterranean tavern, which might otherwise have escaped your notice, was forever put on the tourist map by John Belushi’s Saturday Night Live skit in which the short-order cook barks, “Cheezborger! Cheezborger! No fries! Cheeps! No Pepsi, Coke?”
Augmented reality apps such as Lonely Planet’s are slowly coming into their own and will change the way travelers experience destinations.

Lonely Planet offers 25 Compass City Guides for locales including Amsterdam, Bangkok, Barcelona, Beijing, Boston, Chicago, Hong Kong, Istanbul, Las Vegas, London, Los Angeles, Miami, New Orleans, New York City, Paris, Prague, Rome, San Francisco, Seattle, Seoul, Singapore, Sydney, Tokyo, Vancouver, and Washington, D.C.

Using GPS-enabled maps, the guides detail hundreds of points of interest within a city and are designed as a neat way to figure out your next move if you want to avoid a cab or bus and take in a nearby venue.

There’s no need to break out a guidebook and scour the index – all of the local information is viewable in your Android phone.
Lonely Planet periodically reduces the pricing for downloads of its apps – and this special runs through Christmas.

In addition to Android prices dropping, Lonely Planet is offering up European travelers stranded due to extreme weather free iPhone city guides featuring 13 popular destinations through December 23. 

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