So much can be done with a hotel's In-Room-Entertainment (IRE) services, from direct communication with guests to pure entertainment. However, technology advances so quickly that it is extremely difficult to keep up with current technology trends. There is an entire spectrum of how a hotel might address offering in-room entertainment via televisions. On one end there are hotels with a basic set-up only offering local channels, and on the other end there are specialized in-room tablets that remotely control all of the integrated tech within the room.
Depending on your target audience, it makes sense to question where your hotel falls on this spectrum. If you're reading this article, you're already taking the first step toward improving your guests' experience. If you find yourself already asking "How?" then skip ahead to this article: How Netflix Integrations Link Old and New World of Hospitality. Either way, it makes a lot of sense to first answer the question in the title of this article, WHY is streaming important for your hotel guests?
Why should you care?
In short, the answer is because you should be focused on providing services that will directly influence your guest's satisfaction. The facts are: your guests have smart devices with these apps installed on them, your guests have subscriptions to streaming services, and you have TVs in your room (that may or may not be smart).
According to a research study from ADB Global, 2100 guests were surveyed about their experience with in-room technology. The responses were categorized by age in order to compare the differences between age groups and recognize current trends as the habits and expectations of younger travelers, Millennials, are likely to become more relevant as they age.
Per room, traveler groups carry an average of 1.71 smartphones and 1.49 laptops but the average for Millennials is much higher with 2.48 smartphones and 2.22 laptops. When asked about which devices they attempt to connect to/watch on their hotel room TV, 57.4% of guests (75% of Millennials) reported that they attempt to connect their own devices to the room's TV, either via cable or streaming device. Conversely, 42.6% don't use their devices, but when looking at the age groups, that number shrinks to only 25% of Millennials.
Taking into account the relevant streaming services, this survey also asked about which apps the travelers had accounts with. Overall the leading streaming provider is Netflix, with 60.2% of travelers with accounts (83% of Millennials), followed by YouTube with 45% (63.3% of Millennials), and 38.2% for Amazon Prime (53% of Millennials). Only 3.7% of Millennials state that they don't have any streaming accounts - compared to 52.2% of the Baby Boomer generation.
Because guests prefer it
In order to be guest-centric, it makes sense to ask them about their preferences while also taking inventory of what your hotel's hardware and software already supports. From the perspective of the guest, these are the preferences for streaming media in their rooms
|How would you PREFER to stream media during a hotel stay?|
|Millennials||Gen X||Boomers||Overall Average|
|On my own device||45.8%||38.9%||14.8%||33.6%|
|On the hotel room TV by entering my passcode into the TV set||37.0%||29.6%||10.9%||26.1%|
|On the hotel room TV using Chromecast, Roku, or similar||23.9%||15.0%||2.7%||13.8%|
|On the hotel room TV connecting via a cable (i.e. HDMI)||26.2%||15.3%||5.2%||15.4%|
|On the hotel room TV connecting wirelessly||27.6%||18.8%||7.3%||17.8%|
|I don't watch my streaming media during my hotel stays||8.6%||22.3%||65.5%||31.6%|
Source: ADB Global
The most relevant takeaways from this are to note the trend of preferences by generation. Clearly, Millennials and Generation X find this topic much more relevant than Baby Boomers do, and there is a major gap in between the two groups. If your current target customer doesn't find these topics relevant today, the next generations of your guests will expect these topics to be addressed.
In order to analyze your current situation, it makes sense to ask questions relevant to how you can support streaming:
- Do I have the Wi-Fi infrastructure to support streaming?
- Is it already accessible for guests to connect their own devices?
- Do my TVs already support streaming? Can additional hardware make this possible?
- Can I protect my guest's private data if they use these apps through my hardware?
Yes, by making sure that personal data (i.e. usernames, passwords, and viewing data) is automatically deleted upon checkout. This is where the integration between EasyLynq and apaleo works.
After answering these questions, you'll better understand where you fit on the spectrum and also how that fits with the background of how travelers perceive these services. Are there simple ways for you to provide these services or does it make sense for you to reach out to companies, like EasyLynq, who have the technical background to guide you through the next steps to better understand how all of this relates back to your hotel technology stack.
For further information on the topic, continue reading EasyLynq's free article How Netflix Integrations Link Old and New World of Hospitality or schedule a call with both EasyLynq and apaleo to learn how we can help you address your streaming needs.
Posted byLex Parree