“Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc. is placing a $550 million bet that hotel guests increasingly will use smartphones to choose rooms, check in and even unlock doors,” Craig Karmin reports for The Wall Street Journal. “The company plans to announce this week new technology intended for its 4,200 properties world-wide.”

“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,” Karmin reports. “Next year, Hilton says, arriving guests can begin using their smartphones to unlock the doors to their rooms, rather than waiting on any lines clogging the front desk to pick up a key. That feature will be available at most of the company’s hotels world-wide by the end of 2016.”

“Hilton isn’t the first to offer at least some of these customized features. Starwood, for instance, is already testing mobile-phone room keys at two of its Aloft brand hotels and plans to offer the option at roughly 150 Aloft and W hotels by the end of 2015,” Karmin reports. “Marriott says that 967 of its hotels offer mobile check-in and check-out, and more than 4,000 hotels globally will offer those services by year-end.”

Read more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Readers "Fred Mertz" and "Arline M." for the heads up.]

Related articles:
Hilton to lure Apple iPhone, iPod touch users with seven new apps – November 9, 2009
Hilton unveils alarm clock with iPod plug-in; launches online contest with Apple iTunes prizes – March 29, 2005