- Enable guests to use their smartphones, tablets, laptops and other portable devices to project their OTT (over the top) content to the in-room TV
- Broadcast emergency alert messaging on room TVs to inform guests and staff of safety procedures in case of fire, natural disasters or criminal threats
- Turn static display TV monitors into a digital content campaign manager to support property wide Digital Signage
October 31, 2017 – Geneva, Switzerland. – Today’s in-room entertainment technologies have evolved beyond providing pay-per-view movies in guestrooms. It now encompasses everything from live TV, video on demand, pay per view, and searchable interactive program guides, to pausing, rewinding, fast-forwarding live TV and streaming content from guests’ mobile devices to the TV. ADB, a company delivering advanced TV solutions for hotels across cable, satellite, and IPTV for more than 20 years, has identified the top three features every hotelier should request from their IRE provider in 2018 to meet their operational needs and guests demands.
“Times are changing, and hoteliers are finding that they can use the IRE system to do much more than provide guests with television programming,” said Chris Dinallo, CTO & General Manager of ADB vuTyme Business Unit. “Research shows a big chunk of hotels’ IT spending next year will be used towards improving digital customer engagement. As guests become more accustomed to accessing information when and where they want it, hotels must invest in technologies that meet those demands. Only then will the guest experience truly be enhanced and appreciated.”
Consider these findings:
- According to the 4th edition Egencia Business Travel and Technology Survey (2017), travelers are looking to technology to make the corporate travel journey more productive and manageable. The report shows 66 percent of business travelers want to manage their business travel on every mobile device, not just on their smartphone. Additionally, 56 percent of global respondents simply want access to business travel tools to do more on mobile in general.
- According to Hospitality Technology's 2017 Customer Engagement Technology Study, 79% of hotels plan to have a comprehensive mobile experience in place for guests by 2018; 62% plan to add or upgrade their Digital Signage platform in 2018; and 42% of guests said they want integration between their mobile phone and the in-room TV.
- In its 2017 Portrait of American Travelers survey, MMGY Global reports that Millennial families – who rely on mobile technology for a do-it-yourself travel experience – are going to spend more and travel more in 2018 than all other generational segments. The study predicts that the 9.5 million households that are American Millennial families will spend 19 percent more on vacations during the next 12 months and intend to travel 35 percent more than the previous year. To support the demands of this demographic, hotels need to invest in the technologies their Millennial guests expect to use during their stays.
“Hoteliers need to understand that interactive TV content – or lack thereof – has a direct impact on guest satisfaction and loyalty,” Dinallo said. “If hotels are not offering the level of in-room entertainment services that guests want – especially Millennials – they will go elsewhere.”
Here are three features that every IRE provider should offer in 2018 and beyond:
- Screencasting – This feature enables users to “cast” their personalized programming from YouTube, Netflix, Pandora and other premium content providers onto the bigger in-room screen. When it comes to in-room entertainment, travelers would prefer to watch content that they bring with them using the room TV because most hotels have limited channels. ADB created vuCaster (powered by Google Cast™) to make the streaming process as easy as possible. To stream content from smartphones, tablets, portable computers and other mobile devices to the TV, guests simply use the vuTyme on-screen menu to activate vuCaster. It’s not necessary for guests to enter their account credentials for Netflix, YouTube, Amazon Prime, Hulu and others. Once activated, guests launch their favorite content app on their mobile device and press the “Cast” icon, content is instantly streamed to the TV. It’s frictionless. And, when content is being viewed on the TV, it frees up guests’ mobile devices for other activities.
- Emergency Alert Messaging – This feature will inform guests via in-room TV of on-premise threats and the specific emergency action they should take to keep them safe. Instead of sounding just an audible alarm to alert guests of an incident without knowing specifically what the emergency is, where it is, and what they need to do, tying EAM to the in-room TV will provide them with the details they need to act. ADB is hospitality’s first IRE provider to add an Emergency Alert Messaging system to its platform, providing guests with real-time, life-saving information via the in-room TV about what is happening and what they need to do to remain safe.
- Digital Signage – If you’ve got TVs, you can have digital signage. Providing interactive wayfinding, lists of events and hotel services can be costly, but guests expect it. If it’s not part of a hotel’s mobile app, that information must be prominently visible somewhere. Working with the hotel’s IRE provider, hoteliers can easily display relevant content via TVs that are not in use. ABD works with hotels to turn their un-used TVs into a non-interactive content display system without processing fees or involving a third party to manage it for them. The ADB Digital Signage system is no cost; it comes with the vuTyme IRE system and no dedicated equipment is needed. It’s flexible; hoteliers can enable/disable on any given vuTyme TV. There are no dependencies; hoteliers can create their own content. It supports simple content generation; PowerPoint and images suffice.
“Hoteliers with limited budgets, yet who are looking to offer the tools that today’s travelers demand, can turn to ADB and vuTyme,” Dinallo said. “Our solutions are low cost and easy to deploy via your local cable provider. Better yet, they meet the very specific demands of today’s discerning travelers – especially Millennials.”
vuTyme is offered as a managed service to hotels using the global cloud infrastructure or cable company central office. ADB offers 24/7 monitoring to ensure reliability and delivery of service. vuTyme requires no capital expenditure and hotel head-end equipment – just a compact set-back box discretely mounted behind the TV.