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Hilton: Smartphones Will Serve as Room Keys By Next Year

by Brandon Russell | July 28, 2014July 28, 2014 11:30 am PST

Hilton check-in

Your next stay at a Hilton hotel will be completely different from the experience you know today. The popular chain of hotels on Monday announced travelers will now have complete control over their stay, from the room they sleep in to customized upgrades. Even more, the chain also has plans to take advantage of smartphone prominence by allowing guests to get room service and even check-out through their mobile device.

Hilton says it plans to have its new plans rolled out to more than 4,000 Hilton Worldwide properties across 11 brands by the end of 2014, with perks such as digital check-in and room selection for Hilton HHonors members. Before their stay, travelers will be able to peruse through digital floorplans, and then choose the exact room they want; it’s no longer up to the check-in clerk. By the end of 2015, Hilton says it will have smartphone room key technologies across four brands at U.S. properties.

Hotel chains have experimented with mobile check-ins before, and there’s also been greater interest in mobile room key technology, but nothing at such a large scale. Once the technology is rolled out, guests will be able to unlock their room with just their smartphone, so you can essentially go straight up to your room when you arrive at the hotel; no longer do you need to go through the long, drawn out process of checking in, getting your key, and then taking that bank of elevators by the Twilight slot machines.

“We analyzed data and feedback from more than 40 million HHonors members, as well as guest surveys, social media posts and review sites, and it’s clear that guests want greater choice and control,” said senior vice president and global head of digital, Geraldine Calpin, at Hilton Worldwide.

Rooms will be equipped with the mobile room key tech next year in the U.S., with plans to do a system-wide roll out by the end of 2016. That, in theory, should allow customers to check-in, get into their room and check-out without ever stopping by the front desk.

HiltonWorldwide

Brandon Russell

Brandon Russell enjoys writing about technology and entertainment. When he's not watching Back to the Future, you can find him on a hike or watching...

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