Microsoft bought Seattle-based airfare prediction and travel site Farecast earlier this month for around $115 million, according to a person familiar with the transaction.
A Microsoft spokeswoman would not comment on the terms of the deal, but did confirm the purchase, which closed April 9.
"Farecast has been a partner of ours on MSN Travel and we look forward to working closely with the Farecast team to incorporate and apply its technology in new and interesting ways," Whitney Burk, a spokeswoman with Microsoft's Online Services business, said in a statement.
The broad, data-mining technology underpinning Farecast has several potential applications that benefit consumers, Etzioni said. He declined to discuss Farecast's specific plans, but pointed to other examples, such as Clearflow, a new feature of Microsoft's Live Maps to help drivers dodge traffic jams, and the real-estate forecasting site Zillow.