Company insight

Link them up to a network and it is possible to see if someone is trying a card on different rooms in succession. Clever data management software can set up a rule for how to respond to a specific situation. So, if an intruder is trying out multiple locks, an alert about this activity can be synchronised with security cameras to throw up a video image of the corridor in question.

Data harvest

RUCKUS uses dedicated software to pull all of this information together. Every valuable item can be given an electronic tag that tells the hotel if it has moved. This practice has been used to protect works of art that unscrupulous guests might be tempted to remove from their room.

The IoT approach can also protect staff. IoT-enabled panic buttons embedded in simple bracelets allow hotel workers to alert security to their location if they feel unsafe. All of this electronic activity hums away in the cloud. When everything is controlled from remote data centres, it becomes much easier to implement new technology at speed. Making changes just the once is much more efficient than adjusting the computers installed in each hotel. The appeal of this approach to large hotel chains is obvious. The cloud makes replicating smart new ideas easier and faster. CommScope sees this trend on a daily basis as hotel chains migrate onto the cloud, and it aims to add intelligence to these clusters of computers.

For instance, the company has rolled out connected door locks for hotel chains in Europe. This aligns with the types of commitments hotels are promising guests around ‘less contact, more convenience’ policies and health and safety protocols.

Fast and contact-free

In a pandemic-conscious world, we all want contactless services. A phone app can switch on a room light via signals that are handled in the cloud. But a tiny delay in that signal to a battery of computer servers means an irritating pause before the light comes on. The term for such microscopic but annoying slowdowns

Hotel Management International /

Wi-Fi is one of the factors that can make or break a guest’s experience, so it is vital that good service is available in every corner of a hotel building.

is latency. CommScope’s network management-savvy system banishes latency and keeps guests happy.

Gathering intelligence Covid-19 has changed the game for all of us. Before the pandemic, hotels wanted guests to congregate in areas such as lobbies and bars. Seating and lighting were all arranged to encourage this. Now hotels want guests to stay apart. Restaurant reservations have to be managed to stagger the number of guests present and gyms must be carefully controlled to avoid too many people arriving at once. The hotel’s Wi-Fi network has become the primary means of monitoring just how many people are gathered in any one place. Mobile phones transmit their location and guests can be encouraged to log on to the hotel’s own systems to see when the restaurant is free or when the gym might be too full for them. These electronic connections allow guests to exert control over their situation while the hotel reimagines the guest journey. This is about visibility – letting everyone see where people are and then making the most of that information. And it all flows from an efficient Wi-Fi network. Wi-Fi tells you where people are moving, whether a lift is too crowded or if a reception area should be redesigned to spread people out.

A virus-secure environment for guests comes in many guises. They can download a TV control app to their phone so they will not need to touch the remote. That is one less item for hotel staff to clean. And if they can control the lights from that app, they are less likely to touch fittings and switches. Innovative ideas amount to a roadmap out of the pandemic. New services relying on flawless Wi-Fi connectivity will give guests and staff more confidence about their stay and their working environment as the virus loosens its grip. A well- supported technology offering should make guests feel at home. If they do not notice the network, then it is doing its job effectively. We will be living in the shadow of Covid-19 for a long time. Fears of a resurgence of the virus and new varieties of infection mean that it’s likely hotels will have to manage guest density for the foreseeable future. So, analysing phone signals to see how best to plan the layout of the whole building is vital to keep everyone safe. With reduced guest numbers, hotels should make the most of every opportunity to impress travellers. They will do this with dynamic technology powered by networks that are alive and responsive to every hotel’s needs. ● 43


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