Starwood introduces voice-activated hotel rooms

Guests will be able to control aspects of their room without leaving their bed
Guests will be able to control aspects of their room without leaving their bed

Starwood Hotels & Resorts is taking automation to the next level by trialling a new voice-activated hotel room.

Currently being piloted at two Aloft hotels in the US, the new initiative will utilise Apple’s Siri system to allow guests to control many aspects of their room, such as the temperature and lighting, using only voice commands.

“At Aloft, we are constantly pushing the envelope, our imaginations and the adaptation of technology to reinvent the hotel stay of today and tomorrow,” said Sarah Downing, vice president of global guest initiatives & innovation for Aloft Hotels.

“The new Aloft voice-activated hotel rooms are going to change the way that our guests interact, literally, with their room during their stay with us. It’s the latest way Aloft is changing the way we all travel.”

When guests arrive, they will be able to launch an Aloft app on their in-room iPad to control various aspects of their room. A personalised welcome screen will tell guests how to set up their room. All commands must start with the words: “Hey Siri”.

As well as using voice commands to change elements such as temperature, lighting and music, guests can also use Siri to search the internet or to act as a virtual concierge. For example, if they ask: “Hey Siri, what are some attractions near me?”, Apple’s system will return a list of suggestions.

At the end of each stay, all iPads are reset and all personal preferences are removed from the device.

This is the latest in a series of innovations for the tech-focused Aloft brand. Others have included the SPG Keyless room entry system, which is now being expanded to most other Starwood brands, a robotic butler, and emoji-based room service menu.

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