|Keeping up: TVs are moving beyond video to guest content and hotel services.|
Content is changing. Guestroom TVs are moving beyond video services to touchpoints that bring guest content and hotel services together.
“Just the definition of content on the TV has changed dramatically,” said Bob Wagener, EVP of sales and marketing at Roomlinx. “Now, it’s really a 42-inch LCD monitor that can be leveraged by the hotel to give the guest whatever they want.”
As guests become more used to accessing content through streaming services, such as Netflix and Hulu, they will expect to be able to access those services while on the road, said Wagener. Hotels can keep pace with guest expectations with TVs that put the guest’s content on the screen.
Working with the guest’s content can offer multiple ways of personalizing the guest’s experience, Wagener noted. Roomlinx’s systems can interact with a hotel’s property management and point of sale systems to deliver personalized greetings and aid guest services. It can also speak with digital signage systems to help guests find their way to events taking place in the hotel through their TV.
That power comes with a note of caution, however. Hotels will have to be aware of the privacy concerns that come with dealing with guest accounts. “Guest privacy is always going to be paramount, so you’re not going to be seeing things like systems that maintain guest passwords for outside services,” Wagener said.
Nevertheless, Wagener said that an evolving content strategy could be key to helping TVs regain their importance in the guestroom. “There’s a feeling that with LodgeNet filing for bankruptcy and movie sales on TVs diminishing over the past few years, guestroom TVs may be losing their importance,” Wagener said. “That’s not it—guests are accessing content through multiple ways, and TVs have to keep up.”
Keeping up would mean letting go of the concept of TV as video outlet. “The guestroom television just has to be viewed as another piece of glass in the room,” Wagener said. “There’s a lot of buzz around mobile apps on personal devices. The TV has to follow suit.”