Market research firm PhoCusWright projects that by 2014, 20 percent of hotel bookings will be made by tablet and mobile phones. Projections like this make the flash travel app a hot market, and 2013 has been their year. Pioneering U.S. brands like Hotel Tonight offer last-minute deals on hotel rooms that have attracted millions of mobile users, and nearly $50 million in venture capital. In Europe, flash travel app providers like Hot Hotels and Blink are fighting to capitalize on the lure of last-minute travel in the attraction-dense landscape of the Continent. Just around the globe, Hotel Quickly, flush with Hong Kong venture capital, is staking out South East Asia, perhaps the most mobile-friendly, smart-phone-drenched market in the world. Clearly, as the world changes, the way we travel through it is also transforming. As flash travelers seize the deals found by living without reservations, the traditional hotel industry trembles. True, vacant rooms are the bane of the business, and dumping them off on third-party providers like Hotel Tonight is providential. But selling them off cheap might be a way of selling tomorrow, too. In the worst-case scenario, the dim future of the hotel industry is one where reservations are a fond memory. Wary of missing last-minute bargains, more travelers have stopped booking ahead. Like an army of barbarians armed with smartphones, they lay siege to hotels by waiting until the last minute to book. Brand loyalty will disappear as users chase whatever hotel offers the best bargains. Hotels will be chaos, and hospitality will suffer as reservations, the predictive indicator of service needs, becomes irrelevant. In this future, the atomized blast of flash travel ushers in a dark, wasted landscape of withering hospitality, played out on the bleak tundra of a crumbling industry model. Get the full story at Newsweek