UPDATED 12:26 EST / DECEMBER 08 2017

hilton-connected-room EMERGING TECH

Hilton’s IoT-filled ‘Connected Room’ will be a treasure trove of guest data

Hotel giant Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc. is jumping on the “internet of things” bandwagon in 2018 with Connected Room, new hotel rooms that will come fully stocked with smart home devices that guests will control from their mobile phones.

Hilton hotels have already offered guests a few smart features, such as mobile check-in and keyless room access, but Connected Room will add a number of other IoT amenities, allowing guests to remotely control their room’s temperature, lighting, TV and more. The rooms will also make it easy for guests to connect to their streaming media accounts for platforms like Netflix and Hulu.

According to Hilton, Connected Room will also make it easier for individual hotel locations to keep up with technology, as the rooms can be improved through software upgrades without having to buy new hardware.

“At Hilton, almost all digital products are born out of necessity and shortcomings in the marketplace – and Connected Room is no exception,” Joshua Sloser, Hilton’s senior vice president of digital product, said in a statement. “The technology we put in hotel rooms has to be intuitive, simple and quick to pick up because guests typically spend a limited amount of time in their rooms and we want them to spend that time enjoying the experience instead of adapting to new technology.”

Hilton is currently beta testing Connected Room at a single hotel location, but it has plans to roll the program out to a few other hotels in the coming weeks, with a rapid deployment across the U.S. planned for 2018. The test version uses digital remote controls, but Hilton said it will upgrade the Hilton Honors mobile app with smart device controls before it fully deploys the new rooms across all of its hotels.

Smart home features are a nice perk for hotel guests, but Hilton gets something even more valuable out of the Connected Room platform: data, and lots of it. Buried in Hilton’s statement about how its new rooms will “transform the customer experience,” there is also a brief mention of how the platform will give hotel staff “better insight into guest preferences.” Hilton did not elaborate on what it hopes to gain from this insight, but the Connected Room platform could provide the hotel with all sorts of guest information, from the amount of time guests spend watching streaming media to their preferred room temperature and more.

The data gained from Connected Room could inform decisions made by individual hotels, but it could also influence wider decisions made for the Hilton brand, as it would allow the company to see the difference in guest behaviors across different regions.

Here’s a video showcasing Hilton’s new Connected Room:

Photo: Hilton

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