Hilton to Turn Your iPhone into Your Hotel Room Key

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Your iPhone is already an iPod, a phone, and an Internet connection device, and soon it'll be your room key at Hilton hotels. The company is launching a new service where iPhone owners can choose their room and check in, and next year they'll be able to use their smartphone as a room key, too.

Hilton is turning your iPhone into a hotel room keyHilton is turning your iPhone into a hotel room key

Hilton CEO Christopher J. Nassetta said, "Travelers can use their smartphones as boarding passes to get to their seats on an airplane, so it is only natural that they will want to use them as a way to enter their hotel rooms."

The new room selection and check-in services will be available to Hilton HHonors members starting this sumnmer with availability in 650,000 rooms in 4,000 hotels. Smartphone room keys will phase in during 2015 and will be completely rolled out in 2016.

Travelers will also be able to request services such as room upgrades, as well as other room amenities from their smartphone. Mr. Nassetta also said Hilton has been working to ensure its smartphone-based check-in and room key system is safe and reliable.

Hilton plans to have its new smartphone-based services up and running in its Waldorf Astoria Hotels & Resorts, Conrad Hotels & Resorts, Hilton Hotels & Resorts, Hilton Garden Inn, Homewood Suites and Home2 Suites hotels by the end of the summer. The features will be available in Double Tree and Embassy Suites hotels this fall. Digital check-out will be available worldwide by the end of 2016.

[Some image elements courtesy Shutterstock]

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Remote room selection and check-in, plus the ability to use my iPhone as a room key? This is going to be awesome at trade shows and conferences -- assuming you can get an Internet connection.

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Greg Gehr

…until your battery dies and you are locked out, then you may wish you just had a card key.

Scott B in DC

Great… just what we need, another vector for a replay attack. I hope their liability insurance covers them when the signal is captured and used to steal from the room or worse, someone is raped!


Jeff et al:

If done well, this will be a benefit to frequent travellers.

As someone who travels far more than he’d care to contemplate, I can end up with a pocketful of hotel keys in the span of a week, and more than once, have reached for the wrong one; or had one expire prematurely. As a too-frequent guest of Hilton Hotels of every configuration (and so many others), I welcome being able to use my iPhone, and have the bloody thing simply deactivate my access upon checkout.

What would be even better would be if they made this a full-on hotel service access app, including express checkout with a receipt sent to my iPhone, as well as requesting transport to the next destination, for those all too frequent occasions when is literally running from meeting to the airport.

The iPhone will one day surpass the sonic screwdriver in terms of utility for accessing all things great and small.

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