Marriott Rooms Will Feature Amazon’s Alexa
I saw an article in Rueters this morning that Marriott will be adding Amazon Echo Devices to rooms in an effort to increase guest access to amenities with Alexa. The devices will feature “Alexa for Hospitality”. Alexa will assist guests with traditional operator like functions including ordering room service, contacting the concierge and requesting housekeeping. There are reports that Marriott also tested out Apple’s Siri, but no other information on why they went with Echo.
It seems the introduction will happen slowly. The concept will launch at Marriott hotels in Charlotte, NC, and Irvine, CA, before expanding internationally. I’m willing to bet the plans to expand the service on contingent upon the success of the first few hotels. Though it’s unclear whether their contract is set in stone. This seems in line with the news we reported last week that Marriott will make efforts to modernize the Sheraton brand.
Eventually, Alexa for Hospitality will allow guests to temporarily connect their own Amazon account to play their music or listen to audiobooks.
This seems like it could be a really cool way for hotels to streamline processes for guests and decrease wait times. It would be really nice to access services that you normally have to call for without having to pick up the phone or wait on hold. Also, having on demand music and entertainment is a nice addition. I am however skeptical that it will actually work. I tell my own Alexa how much I hate her at least once a day, she seems kind of dumb to me and really only gets it right 60% of the time, which can be frustrating, but so can dealing with customer service agents at hotels.
I’m curious to see if the issues concerning privacy will deter guests from using them, it would probably be a good idea to offer the option of having it removed from the room for all the conspiracy theorists out there. 🙂