News for the Hospitality Executive
CHICAGO (April 12, 2012) – The hotelier members of Hotel Technology Next Generation (HTNG) awarded the 2011 “Most Innovative Hospitality Award” to Philips Media Suite Hotel TV at the association’s conference last week. First Runner-Up title was awarded to DirecTV for its Residential Experience for Hotels and Second Runner-up position was awarded to Fingi, Inc. for its Fingi device. HTNG senior officers presented the awards at the 8th Annual HTNG North American Conference in Chicago on April 4.The winner and runners-up can immediately start using the award’s seal on product promotional information and packaging. The association’s website has descriptions and links to all contestants from its 2011 Innovation Competition page at http://htng.org/innovation-award/2011-competition. More information about the award and details about winners from the first two years of the award are available from the award’s web page: http://www.htng.org/innovation-award .
HTNG's 2011 Innovation Winners and HTNG Staff
Hotel members selected the winners by voting for their choice of the 19 different technology entrants, whose products covered a very broad range of hospitality technologies and systems, including several mobility focused devices and services, entertainment systems and devices, guest service tools, property management systems, and web applications. During the award ceremony, HTNG President Jim Peterson, who is Senior Vice President of Information Resources for Marriott International, commented on the challenge of choosing the top technologies from such a broad range of contestants, saying “It took me several trips through the judging room to be able to make my final decision.”
HTNG CEO and Executive Vice President Douglas Rice noted the truly global aspect of the three winners as a representation of the increasingly global reach of the association. “I think it is a testament to the strength of innovation across the globe that we have winning technologies from The Netherlands, United States and Thailand.” Rice also noted that the three winners included two new products from existing companies in our industry, but also one from a recent startup company just starting to bring its technology to market. “We take our role in fostering innovation very seriously,” he said, “and we are proud that our process recognizes that great innovation can come from both large and small companies.”
The Philips MediaSuite Hotel TV range is a dedicated SmartTV range for the hospitality industry. According to TP Vision, the new owner of the Philips Hotel TV business* in EMEA, this new range of hospitality TVs, available in EMEA, offers guests a whole new world of online apps like YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Catch-up TV, local and international news, weather, games and much more. TP Vision says that with the unit, there is no longer a need for a set-top box or heavy head-end investments, reducing the total cost of ownership for a hotel.
Wouter Staal, Senior Global Marketing Manager for the Philips Media Suite product, said, “We are so proud to have won this very prestigious prize; it feels like the Golden Globe of the hospitality industry! A big thanks to HTNG’s members, and also to our CoCreation Expert Team of hoteliers and technology leaders for their tremendous efforts in helping us build and launch the MediaSuite with SmartTV for hotels.” He continued, “This award shows that together we’ve found exactly what hotels and their guests look for these days.”
The First Runner-Up technology, DirecTV Residential Experience for Hotels, was created by DirecTV to transport the living room experience into the hotel room. "DirecTV is focused on providing the lodging industry with an entertainment solution that truly fits its unique needs and moves beyond just retrofitting existing systems," said Oswin Eleonora, Senior Vice President of Emerging Markets, DirecTV. "We believe that our Residential Experience for Hotels is a great first step in this effort and we are honored to receive this recognition from such a prestigious lodging organization as HTNG."
DirecTV’s solution provides access to more than 100 HD channels, an easy to navigate interactive programming guide and a simplified remote protected with an anti‐microbial finish, to give guests a home away from home viewing experience. The technology also provides the ability to co‐brand the user display, send on screen display messages and modify programming by room, so property owners can customize the television experience to meet their needs as well. DirecTV reports that 86 percent of guests prefer the DirecTV Residential Experience to other hotel entertainment systems.
The second runner-up was Fingi. Fingi, Inc positions their solution as a big technology with a simple premise, to give travelers complete connectivity and control of their overall guest experience. Fingi is a phone that provides a local telephone number and wireless hotspot connecting guests throughout their stay, both on-property and off, allowing international guests to easily bypass roaming charges. Fingi is also the guest’s room key and remote for all in-room functionality, from air conditioning to lights and curtains, to television and all in-room entertainment. The device provides a direct connection to the hotel, from room service, restaurants and spas to the concierge, both on and off property. Carl Rubin, Vice President Business Development and Legal Affairs, for Fingi, Inc. said, "We are proud and honored to be associated with such a prestigious award and even more proud to be associated with HTNG and the workgroups."
This year’s voting was very close for the 19 contenders. Although the winning technology from Philips was slightly ahead of the pack, only a few votes separated the next seven technologies, and just a single vote separated the two runners-up. Other contestants included (in alphabetic order, by vendor name):
*TP Vision is the new owner of the Philips TV brand for EMEA as of April 1, 2012. See details about the agreement between TP Vision and Philips in the Philips news center: http://www.newscenter.philips.com/main/standard/news/press/2011/20111101_tpv_signing.wpd
About Hotel Technology Next Generation
The premier technology solutions association in the hospitality industry, HTNG is a self-funded, non-profit organization with members from hotel and hospitality companies, technology vendors to hospitality, and other industry members including consultants, media, and academic experts. HTNG’s members participate in focused workgroups to bring to market open solution sets addressing specific business problems. HTNG fosters the selection and adoption of existing open standards. Where necessary, it also develops new open standards to meet the needs of the global hospitality industry.
Membership in HTNG is open to hotel and hospitality companies, technology vendors to hospitality, consultants, academics, press and others. Currently more than 400 corporate and individual members from across this spectrum, including most of the world’s leading hotel companies and technology vendors, are active HTNG participants. HTNG’s Board of Directors alone represents more than 2.3 million guest rooms. Workgroup proceedings, drafts, and specifications are published for all HTNG members as soon as they are created, encouraging rapid and broad adoption. Specifications are released to the public domain as they are ratified by the workgroup. For more information, visit www.htng.org.
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Hotel Technology Next Generation
+1 (847) 303-5560 x 203
For TP Vision (Philips):
office: +44 208 682 9040
mobile: +44 786 680 6853
Senior Manager, Public Relations
+1 (310) 964-3429
For Fingi, Inc.:
Asia-Pacific: +66 (8) 5443 3273
US: +1 (917) 597-5900
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