A major initiative is being rolled out by Hilton, investing over $550 million into a new program that will let guests do most everything from their smartphones, which will include unlocking doors. Hilton is scheduled to announce the new program sometime this week, with plans to introduce the technology at all of its 4,200 properties.
The use of smartphones for services won’t be anything new at Hilton, with guests able to check-in or check-out from their smartphones or using a hotel provided tablet. The new technology, rolling out later this summer will go much further. Guests will be able to choose their room and see its location. No word on whether they’ll make use of Apple’s iBeacons, but that would certainly fit with their plans to broaden appeal to smartphone owners.
Probably the biggest hurdle in the hotel experience is the pickup and drop-off of keys. Hilton’s smartphone app will eliminate the need for keys, but this feature isn’t expected to rollout completely until the end of 2016.
With the majority of clientele owning smartphones, the heavy push by Hilton is one they hope will catapult them ahead of the competition. The added convenience of skipping the dreaded lines at check-in will certainly give them a decided advantage, but for how long?