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Next time you find yourself chillin’ with Chingy at the “Holidae In,” be sure to remember your smartphone.
Talk of your smartphone replacing your credit card has seemingly reached a fever pitch as of late, but pretty soon, your hotel key card may also become a relic of the early 21st century. Next month, guests at two Holiday Inns will be offered the opportunity to skip the front desk and use their smartphones to unlock their hotel room doors.
Guests at the Holiday Inn Chicago O’Hare Rosemont and Holiday Inn Express Houston Downtown Convention Center will be able to download a BlackBerry, Android or iPhone app to trial the new entry system. After launching the app, users will be able to unlock their room by simply holding their smartphone close to the door.
“The holy grail item for us is to simplify the room-key hand-off moment at the hotel,” InterContinental Hotels Group exec Bryson Koehler told USA Today. “The proliferation of smartphones is growing in such a way that we have to look at what people are already bringing with them to make their stay more enjoyable,” Koehler said.
The trial of the new technology is set to last three months, and may also include tests of location-based social network Gowalla which will give the hotel chain a new way to keep frequent guests informed of hotel offers and reward points balances.