We’re almost at the tipping point where smart phones and tablet computers will be as ubiquitous as shoes. This is going to have some impact on how people live and work, and since I travel a bit I ask; what would a post tablet / smart phone era hotel room look like?
Hotels are still old school right now. The tablet / smart phone is a TV, a video collection, a library, a newsstand, a phone, a video phone for gosh sake’s, a weather station, an alarm clock and more. So let’s lose the duplicated effort.
The hotel room doesn’t need an alarm clock. It doesn’t need a TV set. It doesn’t need a phone. Today, every hotel room has these and I never use them except to communicate with the front desk and even them, I’d prefer to be able to phone, text, message or FaceTime them. Lose the newspaper in front of every door. I don’t need that thick binder of printed crap or a room service menu; give me an app or a dedicated site.
The hotel room does need easy-to-access power, with both standard plugs and USB outlets all over the place. Today’s hotel rooms are awful when it comes to power outlets. It needs fast, solid wifi and cell connections that are easily accessed. Give me a place next to bed to put my phone or tablet so I can see it. Some bluetooth speakers in the room would be nice. Can I use my phone to unlock the door instead of a keycard with the name of a pizza place on it?
Focus on what’s important. An awesome bed and bathtub are what people will remember; invest in better beds and baths instead of TVs and phones. Since you don’t need the TV as a focal point, add more comfortable seating and configure the room differently. Rethink storage since you don’t need to chest of drawers to hold up a TV, maybe a walk-in closet makes more sense.
Okay, there are some of my ideas. Leave yours in comments…