Thursday, January 30, 2014

Your Smart Phone Just Got Smarter

...and it's replacing your room key at a few Starwood properties across the country. The Aloft Harlem in New York and the Aloft Cupertino in California will lead the way with the new technology, powered by Assa Abloy. Starwood's Senior VP of Specialty Select Brands, Brian McGuinness, said the pilot program will begin within 60 days. If it does will, you will eventually see the technology in all Aloft, Element and W Hotels by 2015.

After checking in with Starwood's mobile app, guests will get a text message with their room number and virtual key, allowing them to bypass the front desk entirely and head straight to their room. The room lock uses Bluetooth technology available on all iPhone 4s or newer phones as well as any Android 4.3 or newer phones.

"It fundamentally changes the hotel business," McGuinness says. "It changes the job of the front desk. The front desk becomes the concierge desk."

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