Hotel & Travel

Smart Guest Room Automation Starts With the TV

Tech-savvy hotel guests expect in-room technology that is on a par with, or better than, the experience they have at home. But as consumers rapidly adopt smart home-automation technology in their daily lives, this is becoming an increasingly high bar for hoteliers to reach. Many guests are used to controlling certain aspects of their homes from the convenience of their smartphones, whether it’s setting a DVR or controlling the air conditioning, and want the same level of convenience through guestroom automation when traveling. It is crucial that hotels begin planning now to upgrade their in-room infrastructure to meet this growing expectation. Properties that do not provide this level of automation and personalization will find themselves lagging behind competitors.

Many hotels are already on board, prioritizing smart technology upgrades to their rooms. According to a 2015 survey conducted by Hotel Management on behalf of Samsung Business, more than 20 percent of hotels plan to integrate smart guestroom features, such as automated control of lighting, HVAC and drapery, within the next 18 months. And over 40 percent agreed that they would see value in enabling guests to control these features directly from their smart in-room TV. Here are four ways smart TVs can enhance guest room automation at your hotel:

Guest room automation provides convenience for your guests.

Centralized controls provide convenience for your guests and maximize relaxation. By using the room controls on a smart TV, guests can open and close the curtains or turn on and off the lights without ever having to leave their comfortable beds. In addition, they can also control the climate settings and even customize the temperature depending on the time of day.

Hotel room automation can help to conserve energy.

Guestroom automation can also help to conserve energy when guests leave their rooms for the day. Hotel staff can set the thermostat to return to a preset temperature when a guest leaves the room. They can also set the blinds to close and turn the lights off. When the guest uses a room key to enter, the lights will automatically turn on, the curtains will open and the thermostat will return to its previous setting.

Smart hotel rooms help you streamline your hotel’s operations.

Housekeeping can be requested or delayed using request features such as “do not disturb” and “need additional housekeeping services.” With a centralized, electronic record of these requests, management can more effectively estimate cleaning times and dispatch workers accordingly. Customer service will improve as well because special requests will not be lost or forgotten. After a guest checks out, housekeeping can use the TV or a tablet to notify the front desk when rooms are cleaned and ready for occupancy.

Smart hotel TVs provide guests with personalized reservation management.

To enhance the personalized guest experience, the smart TV can be used to access reservation-management features such as quick checkout. Using the TV, guests can check out of their hotel room and review any charges on the screen, saving time and allowing for interactivity not possible with the usual printed sheet under the door. For international travelers, hotels can even present content in the guests’ native languages.

At HITEC, the annual hospitality technology exposition held in Orlando this week, Samsung unveiled its new LYNK SINC 3.0 with HMS, giving users the ability to control and customize HVAC, lighting, drapery and other in-room amenities directly from their Smart TV. These new features build on existing hospitality TV capabilities, such as customizable, branded user interfaces to serve up hotel information and interactive program guides. The new LINK SINC 3.0 with HMS is offered in partnership with intelligent energy management company Telkonet.

Want to learn more about how Smart Hospitality TVs can transform the in-room experience? Read more on our Hospitality page.

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Jennifer Goforth Gregory

Jennifer Gregory has been writing for 20 years and has focused on the hospitality industry for the past five years. She has written for numerous publications, including, MSN Money, Fox Business, Success Magazine, QSR magazine, Hospitality Technology magazine and American Express OPENForum. She works for a variety of national brands including IBM, Allstate, Intuit, Infusionsoft, American Express and Costco. She has a master’s degree in technical communication with a specialization in technology. Follow Jen on Twitter: @byJenGregory

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