How to expand the functionality of TVs

(Samsung TV)

This article is part two of a three-part series on televisions. Here is part one.

As technology progresses and becomes more interconnected, today’s televisions are now serving as more than simply a form of entertainment. They are more flexible and robust interactive hubs for connectivity with the property, adding value for the guest and thereby increasing revenue for the property. Hotels are using TVs in common areas to promote services, offer interactive wayfinding, location-based advertising and more, said Gary Patrick, president of Hotel Internet Services.

Because today’s TVs have more powerful central processing units, targeted advertising is becoming more common. Advertising overlays are a major increased use for hotels. “The game can be on in the sports bar, but the drink specials are running across the bottom,” said Richard Lewis, senior vice president at LG. “There’s a lot going on in the hotel so that advertising is an emerging trend that we will see hotels use to get their messaging and information out to guests.”

Aligning the hotel content to work together with digital signage on the property is important, said Fred Crespo, director of technology and business development for hospitality TV for Samsung Business. “The ease of operational functionality is key, along with the ease of content management, and will help hoteliers close the loop.”

Hotels are leveraging wireless technology in today’s televisions to enable pop-up collaboration spaces and video conferencing for guests in untraditional spaces.

Samsung has televisions that can be used as interactive whiteboards, including a 65-inch display with overlay that is interactive and wireless and can be wheeled into a meeting or public space as needed. “It’s going beyond TV technology and leveraging the smart platform,” Crespo said. “This is functional and yieldable for hotels.”

Hotels are using beacon technology on their properties in a few different ways, Crespo said. Beacons, along with digital signage, are allowing hoteliers to offer technology touch points to frame the guest experience at the property. Televisions can direct guests to their conference room or can offer a video messaging from the company CEO before the meeting.

Beacons can work in the guestroom, as well. The TV can welcome the guest, present the agenda for the guest’s conference, and then, because the TV is integrated with the property-management system, can go to the guest’s favorite channel as indicated in his or her loyalty program profile. “The entire stay experience can be magnified by the proper use of technology,” Crespo said.