It’s a tough job for hotels to keep up with technological advances for the guestroom.
Technology is continuing to evolve in the world’s hotels, all of which struggle to keep up not only with the latest innovations but also with guests’ expectations to encounter a certain level of technology during their stay. Providing such a level of technology, no matter where in the world the hotel may be, is often costly and fraught with hurdles.
Earlier in the decade, a hard-wired internet connection was seen as necessary in all guestrooms if a hotel was to remain competitive. Today, that guest expectation has been replaced by Wi-Fi, the availability of which throughout the property is seen as required. Providing it free of charge gives a competitive edge. To enter the guestroom, traditional keys were replaced by plastic key cards, which were then replaced by electronic key cards, which will in turn soon be replaced by biometric keyless locks.
A large number of guests are rejecting hotels that don’t have iPod/MP3 docking stations in the rooms, while flat-screen televisions are now a must in brand hotels. In another innovation, electronic energy management systems will soon become the norm, automatically controlling heating and air conditioning when guests are in the rooms. But “cloud computing” could become the next technological standard, “whereby shared resources, software and information are provided to computers and other devices on demand, similar to an electric grid”.