At your service: Voice-based concierge


Giving a Tony Stark-esque experience to your guests might just be the next big thing for the hotel industry. While you won’t be able to guarantee the highly advanced artificial intelligence of Jarvis, there is the equally intelligent Amazon’s Alexa or Apple’s Siri.
We have had some time over the years to become acquainted with Siri, and now the voice-based virtual assistant Alexa-powered Echo is taking the world by storm. It is what, experts say, will revolutionize the hotel experience in many ways.

The 360-degree omnidirectional speaker, Alexa, falls under the category of Internet of Things and it is revolutionizing the hotel-to-guest interface. Given the multitude of reasons why people travel, Alexa can assist in such various ways as check-in, thermostat control, lighting, ordering food from the hotel’s restaurant, and even providing a list of must-see sites nearby.
Touch-screen technologies will soon be a thing of the past: it is now all about voice interface. Hoteliers across the world are taking note and adapting fast.
Wynn Las Vegas announced in December their plan to equip all rooms with Alexa. Installations are underway, and the brand claims to be the first in the industry—in the world—to utilize this technology. Alexa, the brain behind Echo, will be operational in all guest rooms by this summer. Initially, the controls will be limited to guest room lights, room temperature, window coverings, and TVs. But the ultimate plan is to include much more after exploring the possibilities.
While it may now seem difficult to imagine all that voice-based services have to offer, the brands are not lagging. Imagine a guest being welcomed by Alexa or Siri the moment they check into a room. The voice-based concierge can sail them through the various facilities available at the hotel. Foreign-language guests can alter the language setting for help in their native tongue. The technology would also be a boon in serving guests with limited mobility or visual impairment.
“Hello, I am Alexa! I am your personal assistant during your stay here. How can I be of service?”
Guests will soon be able to control the lights, lock the doors, or order room service simply by talking to Siri or Alexa. Your customers will just relax and find a movie without so much as a flick of the remote control. The voice-activated concierge service can also act as a tour guide by recommending a museum or café, or even calling a cab. Essentially, they can leave the driving, and just about everything else, to you.

By Dhwani Pathak Dave