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Smartphones, Hilton's new room keys through HHonors app

Hilton Worldwide unveiled yesterday a new feature enabling guests to use their smartphones as room key. It relies on NFC technology and is part of its HHonors app, which already offered mobile ckeck-in and room selection. Explore this innovation through our slideshow.

Hilton Worldwide unveiled yesterday a new feature of its HHonors mobile app, dedicated to members of its loyalty program. This app already offered guests to check in by mobile and choose their room by the number, an industry breakthrough. With this new feature, the US group will turn its guests' smartphones into the keys enabling them to open their room and some common areas of hotels, such as fitness rooms. This feature will be available to members of its loyalty program, just like Starwood Hotels & Resorts did with its recently announced "SPG Keyless" program. Guests may proceed with their mobile check-in from the day before their stay in Hilton Worldwide Hotels.

The group has set a goal to have this application available by early 2016 in 250 hotels in North America, gathering 170,000 rooms under its Hilton Hotels & Resorts, Waldorf Astoria Hotels & Resorts, Conrad Hotels & Resorts and Canopy by Hilton brands. The digital key is currently being tested with iOS and will be made available to Android smartphone users by the end of 2015. To incentivize guests to use the digital key during its US testing period, Hilton will provide them with freebies like free wifi and 2500 extra HHonors points. 

Geraldine Calpin, Senior VP and Global Head of Digital at Hilton Worldwide, said: "With Digital Key, we are making the guest experience even more seamless through our improved mobile app"; "we're giving HHonors members the ability to better control and personalize their stay with us". According to the group, the mobile check-in and room selection features, now available in 4100 hotels worldwide, have been well received by the public, with 2 million downloads and 5 million digital check-ins already recorded and 93%of guests who said they were "satisfied" or "very satisfied" about their experience.

Once the new keyless feature is available, the whole check in and room entry process may be done through the app:

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