Bandwidth – Editor’s Note
There is no question that technology has changed the way we do business. I think it is how and to what degree it has changed our lives and businesses that is the biggest surprise. Who would have thought that we would have keyless locks, pay from our phones, etc. The user experience in all realms has been enhanced. Today, the guest experience is foremost in the minds of hoteliers and he or she who has the best experience comes back. The name on the door is no longer just good enough. The ratings in TripAdvisor and Yelp are the scorecards and your number one fan or disgruntled, disenchanted x-guest are rating every aspect.
When I was little, my family traveled a bit for vacations and daytrips. We packed ourselves into that suburban station wagon and off we went. Growing up in a house with an ultra-cleaning freak (my mother), I was outraged at how filthy gas station restrooms were. I thought I might grow up to be a restroom inspector. That did not happen. I didn’t really know if there even was such a thing, but I always make it a point when I am reviewing an establishment to comment on its cleanliness (thanks Mom). Today’s guests have a lot of power and providing them with the best experience is an obligation. Our job at HIS is to help enable your facility to further empower your guests.
We have a lot of ground to cover this month. Last time we told you about the installation of our BeyondTV Wireless Streaming Player in the Las Vegas Westgate Resort and Casino. In this issue we will go more in depth on the product itself in our Product Spotlight.
We recently conducted a study to determine guest interaction in this new era of BYOD (Bring Your Own Device). We wanted to better understand the current desires of hotel guests and their preferences with regards to the content they wish to watch when staying in a hotel.
Our Scoop section continues to seek out articles that will help you and your business. Certain trends are emerging from free Wi-Fi to streaming. And we close off with some cool vids curated just for you.
Do you have some successful actions you would like to share? Hit me up!
BeyondTV Wireless Streaming Player
BeyondTV is the first fully integrated hospitality streaming product in the market today. BeyondTV enables the guest to have a complete in-home entertainment solution in their hotel room. What Chromecast, Apple TV, Roku and Amazon Fire TV bring to the home, guests can now recreate in their hotel room with the added benefit of being able to avail themselves to hotel amenities and services. Today’s travelers carry their own content whether it be Netflix, Pandora, YouTube or Hulu, etc. They chat with friends on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter. They consult Yelp, TripAdvisor, and others.
BeyondTV provides the ability to:
- Access & select channels from the electronic programming guide
- Wirelessly streaming from a personal device to the room’s television to view your own content
- Listen to your own music
- Access Hotel Amenities including housekeeping, in-room dining, spa, valet, transportation, express check-out and other concierge services
- Access apps like Netflix, Pandora, TuneIn, Hulu Plus, Facebook, Yelp, TripAdvisor, etc.
- Browser the internet
President Gary Patrick helped put the new product into perspective:
“The BeyondTV Wireless Streaming Player is a revolutionary product that enables hotel guests to have the same entertainment experience that they can have at home. This is the first fully interactive system of its kind, which is designed to be integrated into the hospitality industry. It answers the overwhelming guest request to be able to view and listen to their own and subscribed content from Netflix to Pandora to personal photos and videos. For hoteliers, this system is very cost effective as it can run on their existing Wi-Fi infrastructure.”
The BeyondTV Wireless Streaming Player creates a home network environment inside any public venue, such as a hotel, timeshare, resort or MDU. BeyondTV requires no configuration on guest mobile devices. It provides each guest with their own secure private room network. This allows guests to take full advantage of all of their subscribed content with total security and peace-of-mind. The guest experience is further enhanced
New Study Shows Why BYOD Rules
Here are a few choice morsels from the report. You can download the entire study by clicking here.
Following a short demographic section that ascertained travel habits and types of devices the guests brought with them for business and pleasure, the study delved into actual user viewing behaviors. For example, when asked if they preferred watching VOD or the ability to stream Netflix, Hulu, HBO, etc. the answer was resoundingly in favor of accessing their personal subscriptions. Also desired was the ability to stream their own personal content like music, videos, photos, etc.
Hotel interaction with guests is of primary importance, empowering the guest to access hotel amenities and services through the room’s television. For example, Express Check Out and View My Bill rank very highly in the study as does finding local businesses and attractions. Internet access, watching Netflix, Hulu, etc. and the electronic programming guide made the guest experience feel just like at home.
SmartBrief recently polled hoteliers on the following: With the trend for all hotels offering free or tiered Wi-Fi, do you plan to offer additional digital content to cater to the digital traveler? Very interesting response and our conclusion: there is no such thing as maintaining the status quo when it comes to technology. To paraphrase Ken Kesey’s infamous quote: “You’re either on the bus or off the bus,” You’re either hip to the latest tech or you have no tech. Today’s guests will keep you on your toes or you won’t have them anymore. Read More>
Hotel TVs – What Guests Want To Watch
In a world where Wi-Fi is king, and mobile devices accompany travelers wherever they go, how relevant is a hotel TV in giving guests what they want during their stay? Turns out that it’s still pretty important. However the way that guests use hotel TVs is changing, and hotels will need to adapt to the type of TV services they provide in order to keep their guests happy and stay profitable.
Top Hotel Trends to Watch in 2015
Huffington Post: Hotels have long been an integral part of travel, whether they’re booked for business trips, family vacations or anything in between… But with the rise of home-sharing and vacation rental businesses like Airbnb and HomeAway, the industry is being forced to improve upon the status quo and find new ways to appeal to travelers. So how are hotels managing to do that? Exceptional services and unique amenities. Here’s a look at some of the hottest trends on the rise Read More>
The Robots Are Coming
Robots in reception and facial recognition instead of room keys… is this the most futuristic hotel in the world? 10 robot staff will operate a variety of jobs, including cleaning the rooms. Guests at a theme park hotel in Japan will be checked in and have their luggage delivered to their room by robots as well as use their faces to access their rooms. Henn-na Hotel at the Huis Ten Bosch theme park is situated just outside Nagasaki, and will be offering cutting edge technology that could set a precedent for the future. Read More>
Is Access to the Internet a Basic Human Right?
The net neutrality debate of the past few months has opened up another debate: is the internet a basic human right? More than a decade ago, the United Nations formed a world summit to declare the internet as a human right, and even after a poll of 28,000 adults found that nearly 4 out of 5 people agreed with the principle, it’s still a debate that rages today. Read More>
Passwords: 7 ways to make them stronger
Note: This is one of the best articles I have seen in a long time on the subject. Your guests need this info too!
Data breaches are unfortunately a common occurrence. If there’s reason to believe any of your passwords might have been compromised, change them immediately. One of the best things you can do is to make sure your passwords are strong. Here are seven ways to fortify them:
The One Thing Hotels Don’t Want You to Do
Towels are among the most-stolen items in hotels…But we never would’ve guessed that hotels can tell when you’ve stolen a towel (or robe or duvet cover for that matter). It’s all thanks to a tiny, M&M-sized tracking device that thousands of hotels have embedded in their linens — a device that lets them know where their towels, robes and bedsheets are at all times. Read More>
Wi-Fi Quality is expressed by the percentage of hotels that offer adequate Wi-Fi quality in a given geographical area. This type of ranking is easy to understand, and it makes perfect sense from a practical standpoint. For most travelers, having super-fast and consistently stable Wi-Fi is a great bonus, but their first priority is ensuring that basic quality expectations for Internet access are met. Read More>
Each issue we will provide you with a short break from the work-a-day crazies with some videos we curated. Some of them will be industry related. Take a moment and enjoy. Some of the strangest things seem to happen in hotels let alone the entire hospitality industry.
Okay here’s some fun we have curated just for our friends in the hospitality biz. Enjoy!
– Marriott Premieres Its First Original Film – A few months ago I was reading about Marriott creating its own unique content and I just witnessed its premier flick, Two Bellmen. It’s tongue in cheek, it’s a spoof, and it’s genuine fun. I am not going to say more than that. Just take a few minutes and enjoy.
The Grand Budapest Hotel: After winning five Academy Awards and countless other honors, the Grand Budapest Hotel despite its posturing, had some pretty funny scenes. Here are two that were especially good for a laugh:
The Lobby Boy Interview:
The Police Are Here:
Lovable Multi-Tasking Waiter – I must admit this one is a bit strange and even shocking at one point (at least I was taken by surprise). It is supposed to be based on a true story, but I never even tried to track down its origin. www.raahi.com is an Indian travel site, just in case you wondered.
Ace Hotel Room 1021- Graphic designer and custom chalk letterer Dana Tanamachi was commissioned to do this mural on a wall in Ace Hotel New York room 1021. She was inspired by vintage playbills from the Victorian era. It is a good watch, she is incredible.
Hotel Premiere Classe – I have to admit I could not resist posting this one. It is in French but you don’t need subtitles just a funny bone.
Albury Court Hotel- Historic Key West Inns – The Albury Court Hotel has a series of four commercials that will leave you chuckling and appreciating Key West ever so more. Here is my favorite:
Adult Wednesday Addams – Do you remember Wednesday Addams from the Addams family? Can you imagine her as a formidable young woman out in the world? You don’t have to imagine – Melissa Hunter does an incredible job of portrayal in Adult Wednesday Addams. Yes, I know this has nothing to do with hospitality, but this web series is something special. Check it out: