Starwood Hotels rolls out iPhone & Apple Watch-compatible Bluetooth room keys

Posted:
in iPhone edited November 2014
Following a successful trial run in the U.S., Starwood Hotels will now allow guests at a number of the company's properties around the world to walk past the front desk during check-in and unlock their hotel room door using only their iPhone or forthcoming Apple Watch.

Aloft
The Aloft hotel in Cupertino


The SPG Keyless functionality, built into Starwood's SPG app, will be available starting on Wednesday at the Aloft Beijing, Aloft Cancun, Aloft Cupertino, Aloft Harlem, W Doha, W Hollywood, W Hong Kong, W New York-Downtown, W Singapore and Element Times Square hotels. Starwood says availability will expand to 30,000 doors in 150 Aloft, W, and Element hotels worldwide by early 2015.

"Not only does SPG Keyless alleviate a perennial pain point for travelers, but it also transforms the first interaction with our guests from one that is transactional to something more personal," Starwood chief Frits van Paasschen said in a release. "This is just the beginning, because through mobile we have the opportunity to marry high tech and high touch to transform the hotel experience in many exciting ways."



To take advantage of the program, travelers will need a recent iOS or Android device with support for Bluetooth Low Energy. Keys are managed through the SPG app, and will be served up as push notifications approximately 24 hours before arrival.

Starwood first unveiled the iPhone-based program in January of this year. The partnership with Apple was then expanded with the introduction of the Apple Watch, with the SPG Keyless app featured during the wearable's introduction.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 17
    Forward thinking businesses will earn my $'s moving forward. I appreciate companies that make investments to push developing technologies.
  • Reply 2 of 17
    1) Don't expect NFC any time soon.

    2) I can see this as a way for the guest to save time and the hotel to save money.
  • Reply 3 of 17
    adonissmuadonissmu Posts: 1,772member

    I would use this in DC.

  • Reply 4 of 17
    malaxmalax Posts: 1,598member
    I expect this will be the killer app for smart watches. As part of my workday I have to carry 3 different cards (2 transit systems and my company's security card). During a normal workday I have to swipe my company card 15-20 times. For example to get from my desk to a meeting on another floor and back requires 4 swipes. Being able to wave my wrist at a scanner rather than pulling out my card each time would be wonderful. And if I could do away with 3 cards to carry, it would be well worth ditching my day-to-day watch and having to charge a smart watch every night. On net, it would be 2 fewer things to remember each day. And with Apple Pay, in theory I could ditch my wallet at well. Presumably someday we'll be able to do away with physical drivers license cards as well, but I'm not holding my breath (and it's not obvious that I trust the government to run an app on my personal devices).
  • Reply 5 of 17
    1:04-1:14

    Open up the competition.

    LOL!!!

    That scene sums up perfectly what the Apple 6 can do with this technology, and what the Android phones cannot do.
  • Reply 6 of 17

    Bluetooth?  What about the NFC chips in recent devices.  

     

    Watched the video - looks like the phone is running an app when the door is opened, but I could be wrong/

     

    Do you have to access an app to open the door?  

  • Reply 7 of 17
    inteliusq wrote: »
    1:04-1:14

    Open up the competition.

    LOL!!!

    That scene sums up perfectly what the Apple 6 can do with this technology, and what the Android phones cannot do.

    Actually, you can download this for Android phones too. Presumably as long as it has BTLE.
  • Reply 8 of 17
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 6,954member

    I’ve been doing this with my Android phone for years! Welcome to the future, Apple! LOL, ROFLMAO, Torrents RULE!

     

    Or so it is said.

  • Reply 9 of 17
    DAAAAAD!! Why is Rex Chapman sleeping in my room?!!?
  • Reply 10 of 17
    Hackers of the world%u2014the dastardly kind%u2014take note. There's money in this, lots of money. Keyless, Bluetoothed cars can be broken into. Can hotel rooms be far behind? Probably not.

    At least, with all that computerization, you'll know precisely when you were burglarized. That'll be a small comfort.
  • Reply 11 of 17
    inkling wrote: »
    Hackers of the world%u2014the dastardly kind%u2014take note. There's money in this, lots of money. Keyless, Bluetoothed cars can be broken into. Can hotel rooms be far behind? Probably not.

    At least, with all that computerization, you'll know precisely when you were burglarized. That'll be a small comfort.

    1) Magnetic strips in plastic door keys are much easier to copy. Hackers are likely to stay away from physical access as it puts those pussies at risk.

    2) NFC which TouchID would be a much better option than BLE, but who knows if and when Apple may expand that HW.
  • Reply 12 of 17

    I honestly think Wall Street is going to find Apple too hard to ignore and continue claiming the company has no future.  Apple is definitely making things happen in a good way to change the way consumers are doing things.  It appears as Apple was doing a lot of work behind the scenes to get ready for big changes.  Wall Street didn't have a clue and neither did anyone else outside of Apple except the companies directly involved.  I think they were definitely wrong about Tim Cook being an incompetent CEO.  He may not be Steve Jobs but he gets things done just the same.

  • Reply 13 of 17
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 6,954member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Constable Odo View Post

     

    I honestly think Wall Street is going to find Apple too hard to ignore and continue claiming the company has no future.  Apple is definitely making things happen in a good way to change the way consumers are doing things.  It appears as Apple was doing a lot of work behind the scenes to get ready for big changes.  Wall Street didn't have a clue and neither did anyone else outside of Apple except the companies directly involved.  I think they were definitely wrong about Tim Cook being an incompetent CEO.  He may not be Steve Jobs but he gets things done just the same.




    Wow, just a couple of months ago you were predicting Apple’s ultimate doom. And you’ve been suicidal since the stock split. Now, all of a sudden, you are on the bandwagon again. What happened Odo? Did somebody piss in your bucket while you were regenerating in it.

  • Reply 14 of 17
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Inkling View Post



    Hackers of the world%u2014the dastardly kind%u2014take note. There's money in this, lots of money. Keyless, Bluetoothed cars can be broken into. Can hotel rooms be far behind? Probably not.



    At least, with all that computerization, you'll know precisely when you were burglarized. That'll be a small comfort.



    'Bluetoothed' cars are broken into if the software behind them is poor, it's nothing to do with it being bluetooth.

     

    Many hotels use RFID for entry, or magnetic strip, both are just as vulnerable as bluetooth if the implementation is poor.

  • Reply 15 of 17
    envirogenvirog Posts: 188member
    That's great news! One more reason I'll choose one of their hotels on my next vacation.
  • Reply 16 of 17
    sbono13 wrote: »
    Actually, you can download this for Android phones too. Presumably as long as it has BTLE.

    So then it's something that the iPhone can do that very, very few android phones can do.;)
    If it worked via NFC it would increase the number of compatible android devices a bit but as it stands I'm surprised SPG/Starwood took the time to build an android app for such a small market. I guess the costs associated with developing the app compared to the cost of rolling out the hardware would make it worth the expense.

    Hopefully this will be the start of this technology being more widely implemented (for both iOS and android).
Sign In or Register to comment.