The company plans to announce this week new technology intended for its 4,200 properties world-wide. Targeting younger travelers, Hilton is aiming to leapfrog competitors that already have rolled out new services like turning mobile phones into room keys. Guests already can check in and check out with a few punches on a smartphone or tablet-computer screen at all of Hilton's hotels in the U.S., the company said. By the end of summer, travelers will be able to see the location of and select their own rooms by mobile phone at six brands, from the midscale Hilton Garden Inn to the luxury Waldorf Astoria.
Beginning next year, guests will be able to use their smartphones to unlock their room, instead of having to wait in line to check-in and obtain a key. By the end of 2016, the feature should be available at most of the company's hotels.
"We are giving customers unprecedented choice and control at scale, and in the palm of their hands," says Christopher Nassetta, Hilton's chief executive.
Hilton is stepping up its technology to compete with other operators such as Starwood Hotels & Resorts, Marriott, and InterContinental, all of which are rolling out enhanced mobile features at their properties.
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