HB ON THE SCENE: Hotel Tech Companies Unveil New Partnerships at HITEC

TORONTO—HFTP’s HITEC conference—held here this year—is an opportunity for hospitality technology companies to showcase new technologies—and new partnerships. These relationships—whether with brands or other technology companies—introduce integrations that have the ability to enhance the hotel experience, from front of house to back. The following are just a few of the many new relationships and integrations unveiled leading up to the event:

Kube Systems partnered with Gimbal to bring beacon technology to the guestroom. Now, hotels can leverage Kube Essentials together with Gimbal to engage customers by offering promotions and other contextual notifications to their mobile devices. The service allows the hotel to drive revenue by vastly improving the consumer journey, both inside and outside the hotel room, according to the company.

Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group partnered with Ideas Revenue Solutions. The goal of the partnership is to increase revenue performance across the group’s seven brands and more than 1,100 hotels. “By partnering with Ideas, we feel we are providing our hotels with the best revenue management technology to help us drive efficiency and higher returns. Strategic investments in industry leading tools supports our mission to be the preferred hotel company for both owners and travelers,” said Eric De Neef, EVP, global chief branding & commercial officer for Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group. The solution will begin rolling out globally in Q3 2017.

Similarly, RLHC (Red Lion Hotels Corporation), chose Eleven, a cloud-based guest WiFi management company, as its central WiFi authentication platform provider. The implementation of ElevenOS means Hello Rewards members log in once with their loyalty membership credentials and receive free, premium WiFi automatically at RLHC properties across the U.S. “We are committed to being on the leading edge of technology experiences that reward guest loyalty,” said John Edwards, CIO of RLHC. “We selected ElevenOS to go beyond just delivering premium WiFi automatically to our Hello Rewards members. Moving forward, we are excited to enable WiFi driven services that create the personalized guest experiences our loyalty members truly demand, and deliver revenue opportunities for our owners.”

Eleven and Dish Network also unveiled an integration and reference architecture that is purpose-built for hospitality to enable guests to seamlessly stream entertainment content from their devices to the TV. Hotels can create personal area networks for each room, so guests can securely connect to Dish’s Evolve platform. Guests can then use Chromecast built-in to stream content from thousands of entertainment apps privately to the TV in their room. Eleven also unveiled an integration with Cendyn, a cloud-based hospitality software and services company, between the ElevenOS central authentication platform and Cendyn Hotel CRM Suite. This enables hotel brands to reward their loyalty members with free or premium WiFi seamlessly across all properties.

RMS Hospitality Solutions and OpenKey revealed a new integration partnership that enables RMS to send mobile key technology directly from its cloud-based property-management system. The RMS Mobile Key App will enable seamless room access for guests pairing their phones with Bluetooth-enabled door locks from manufacturers around the world, including Assa Abloy Hospitality, dormakaba, Salto Systems, and, coming soon, Miwa. On the day of arrival, properties can send pre-arrival messages asking guests if they would like to check in online and obtain mobile keys by downloading the RMS Mobile Key App. When they do this, travelers will be given a room assignment, along with instructions on how to download the app (available via Apple Store or Google Play). The RMS Mobile Key App also enables travelers to chat with the front desk prior to arrival, including sending their estimated time-of arrival after confirming their identity with an ID capture for security purposes.

Cloud5, a communications technology and services platform, is partnering with Go Moment to offer an automated guest engagement solution. Go Moment delivers guest services using text messaging to ensure guests get instant, AI-powered service without needing to download any apps. Go Moment’s Ivy, powered by IBM Watson, personally texts guests and answers routine questions automatically, increasing guest satisfaction, hotel review volume and revenue while simultaneously freeing up labor through automation.

Angie Hospitality, creator of Angie, a hotel guestroom assistant, completed an integration with Fourteen IP’s Evolution Voice, a cloud-based PBX solution powered by BroadSoft. Among other functionality enhancements, this new technology integration will allow guests of hotels equipped with both Angie and the Evolution Voice system to make and receive calls using voice-command through Angie’s built in telephone and integrated Bluetooth speakers.

MSI Solutions and SiteMinder have partnered, enabling MSI’s CloudPM property management system to integrate with SiteMinder’s distribution platform. Mark Loyd, president at MSI Solutions, says the partnership provides freedom for the modern hotelier and the opportunity to discover untapped revenue streams. For hotel users of CloudPM, the real-time, two-way integration of SiteMinder’s platform into the property management system removes manual entry, reduces the risk of overbookings and lowers the cost of guest acquisition.

Percipia has been selected by Avaya for membership as a Technology Partner in the Avaya DevConnect program. Avaya is a global provider of business communications software, systems and services. Percipia is the developer of Parallax hospitality suite, Precision voice mail and Informant call accounting software, an application family that integrates Avaya IP Office and property management systems (PMS). As a DevConnect Technology Partner, Percipia expects to deliver proven interoperability of its solutions with the Avaya IP Office Platform, so companies can provide their guests with check-in, checkout, wake-up calls, housekeeping updates, and many other hospitality functionalities. When coupled with call accounting software, hotel staff members have access to an analytical call data and report solution that can help them provide better customer service, according to the company.

Shift4, a secure payment solutions and services provider, unveiled the general availability of its integration to the Oracle Payment Interface (OPI). This integration provides fast, secure and reliable payment processing to thousands of merchants who use Oracle’s point-of-sale and property management solutions.