Apps. How many do you download? Any? Some? All the time? There are many apps being developed for the hotel industry with quite a few featured in the recent issue of Hospitality Upgrade (http://mag.hospitalityupgrade.com). Recently, I downloaded a new app. The app has nothing to do with the hotel industry, but it absolutely amazed me. I was entrusted to get prescriptions filled for someone who just got out of the hospital after eight days. I went to my local pharmacy where I always go and had the prescription filled. The cost was nearly $300. Wow, drugs are expensive. A few weeks later another prescription had to be filled for the same drugs. Geneva from our office suggested I use the app GoodRx where you enter prescription names and dosage amounts and the app lists all the pharmacies in your area and the cost at each store location. The range of prices for the same drug at different stores in the same area is unbelievable. To make this story short, the exact same drugs that cost nearly $300 a few weeks ago this time cost $71. Yes, the exact same prescription and without the app, I would have never known. This got me thinking, how would something like that work in the hotel industry? There are many offerings out there that promise travelers the best deal, but can you imagine seeing two four-star hotels across the street from one another having this wide a gap? Unloading excess inventory? Revenue management, be damned? I for one don’t see it happening but who can be sure. Yes, on GoodRX the prices displayed showed the spread where my pharmacy still had it priced at $300, and where I should buy the same medicine for $71. I guess I am now going to be an avid app user.
December is here and to me it is one of the strangest months of the year. Many take time to reflect on the past year, but know the important thing is to prepare for the year ahead. Along with planning for 2017, for those of you who have technology solutions and like the idea of partnering with other companies that will make your offerings more attractive, our Executive Vendor Summit dates were just announced. We will hold this annual, two-and-a-half-day event in San Antonio on February 28 at the beautiful St. Anthony Hotel. Last year was our biggest crowd ever and everyone who attended said they were coming back. If you have never attended and would like to join us, please email Anne at mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org. As much as the holidays are nearing, the New Year is right behind. We are looking forward to the industry changes that are rumored to happen and especially to the next app that I am going to download!
Here now is the real reason we are here, Dan Phillips’ review of the recent technology happenings. I will see you at the end with this week’s attempt at you-know-what. Let the holiday season begin!
by: Dan Phillips
Recent headlines, from Dan Phillips
Well, Thanksgiving only cost me 5 extra pounds. And, Black Friday only cost me a few hours of sleep. Then, Cyber Monday tired my eyes and cramped my fingers. And, Giving Tuesday both warmed my heart and left me wondering what more I could have done. But, all said, I love this time of year.
If you are a student of hospitality, especially technology in this space, then this time of year might be good for you too. This seems to be the time when all sorts of groups and associations publish results of surveys and workshops and think tanks and such. It is time to read up on the views of our industry’s thought leaders espousing what they believe will happen next year. Of course, in a month or so we will be reading about what happened the previous year!
In the Piqued Dan’s Interest section below, somewhat different than usual, I have provided articles and links that will lead you to studies and papers that may need to be downloaded. I apologize for that, but, if you want to learn, to harvest new thoughts from some of the best, you have to do a bit of work sometimes. My hope is that you enjoy these publications as much as I do, but more so find ways to implement them into your businesses. Enjoy!
- Whistle Messaging, Inc., Announces New Appointments to Board of Directors - Zaplox Appoints Richard Svensson as Senior Manager, Commercial Services - Aimbridge Hospitality Names Derek Martin as New Vice President of Feasibility and Planning - Emmanuel Vallee Appointed Vice President Sales at Deutsche Hospitality - Diamond Resorts International Appoints Matthew Avril as Chief Executive Officer - Hilton Appoints Katie Beirne Fallon as Senior Vice President and Global Head of Corporate Affairs - White Lodging Names Ken Barrett, Current CFO, as New CEO Amid Hotel Building Boom - Wyndham Hotel Group Strengthens Leadership Team in EMEA with Two New Regional Vice President Appointments --------------------------
- Cendyn Announces Acquisition of Guestfolio - Cognizant to Acquire Digital Marketing and Customer Experience Agency Mirabeau BV - SBE Completes Acquisition of Morgans Hotel Group - Wyndham Hotel Group Acquires Fën Hotels --------------------------
- Next-generation Property Management Systems Play Key Role in Enhancing the Guest Experience Says New Study - MSI releases CloudEnterprise - StayNTouch Partners with Revinate to Integrate Cloud-Based Hotel Solutions --------------------------
- Sabre Empowers Travel Agents with Virtual Payment Technology for Air Bookings - SiteMinder Secures its Place in Deloitte Technology Fast 50 for Sixth Year Running - SiteMinder Officially Opens in Galway - BookingTek Raises £2.2 Million - SeeTheWorld Partners with GuestCentric to Provide Hotel Booking Experience --------------------------
- Milestone’s Galexi™ CMS can now Power ADA Conforming Sites -------------------------- Milestone’s Galexi™ CMS can now Power ADA Conforming Sites Milestone announced that its Galexi CMS is one of the first in the hospitality market to provide the necessary framework and technology to allow for the development of ADA conforming websites. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was enacted in 1990 by the US Congress, and it mandates that electronic and information technology must be accessible to people with disabilities. http://www.milestoneinternet.com **
- Two Roads Hospitality Powers New Brand with revintel Business Intelligence Solution from The Rainmaker Group -------------------------- Two Roads Hospitality Powers New Brand with revintel Business Intelligence Solution from The Rainmaker Group Two Roads Hospitality, a unique lifestyle and independent hotel management company, is expanding its use of The Rainmaker Group's revintel business intelligence platform portfoliowide for increased insights into strategic data, following the merger between Destination and Commune Hotels in January 2016. The recent merger, and the rebranding to Two Roads Hospitality, created an opportunity for the newly combined organization to implement a comprehensive business intelligence platform across its whole portfolio. http://www.letitrain.com, http://www.tworoadshotels.com/ **
- AT&T on Path to Triple DIRECTV Presence in Best Western Hotel Rooms - Cardtronics Now Exclusive ATM Provider to Carnival Cruise Line - Hyatt Place Jacksonville Airport to Install FlyteBoard Digital Signage to Keep Guests On Time - Kube Systems Partners with Guest Supply to Distribute Mobile Device Charging Solutions - TrustYou Expands South American Presence Through Partnership with Slaviero Hotels - Innovative Guest-facing Technology Builds Repeat Business and Improves Trip Advisor Ratings --------------------------
- New Innovations in Hospitality HSIA from Sunray Elevate Guest Experiences Through Network Monitoring and Management -------------------------- New Innovations in Hospitality HSIA from Sunray Elevate Guest Experiences Through Network Monitoring and Management Sunray, a leading HSIA network provider for the hospitality industry, will unveil the next phase in hotel network management innovation in December, 2016. In addition to Sunray’s Umbra service suite, this next phase includes real-time wireless connection quality monitoring and an intelligent auditing system. http://sunray.net **
- UniFocus Launches Labor Management System Tailored to the Select-service Hotel -------------------------- UniFocus Launches Labor Management System Tailored to the Select-service Hotel UniFocus, the Dallas-based provider of one of the service industry’s most comprehensive workforce performance solutions, has rolled out simplified labor management software called UniFocus Select Service. The new platform is designed to meet the specific scheduling and labor management needs of the ever-expanding select-service hotel market. http://www.UniFocus.com **
F&B/POINT OF SALE
- Agilysys Recognized for Groundbreaking Mobile POS Solution - Cypress Bayou Casino Hotel Selects Agilysys Solution Suite to Optimize Food and Beverage Delivery -------------------------- Agilysys Recognized for Groundbreaking Mobile POS Solution Agilysys, Inc. (Nasdaq: AGYS), a leading global provider of next-generation hospitality software solutions and services, announced that InfoGenesis® Flex, the company's groundbreaking mobile POS solution, has been named a finalist for Product of the Year in the 2016 BIG Awards for Business. http://www.agilysys.com ** Cypress Bayou Casino Hotel Selects Agilysys Solution Suite to Optimize Food and Beverage Delivery Agilysys, Inc., a leading global provider of next-generation hospitality software solutions and services, announced that Cypress Bayou Casino Hotel in Charenton, La., has selected a comprehensive solution suite — including InfoGenesis® POS, InfoGenesis® Flex, rGuest® Analyze and rGuest® Pay — to enhance efficiency and streamline food and beverage service. The property, which is owned and operated by the Chitimacha Tribe of Louisiana, is a long-time user of the Agilysys Eatec® inventory and procurement system. http://www.agilysys.com **
- Shift4 and SilverWare POS Announce Joint EMV Solution for Hospitality Industry -------------------------- Shift4 and SilverWare POS Announce Joint EMV Solution for Hospitality Industry Payment gateway provider Shift4 Corporation and SilverWare POS, a leading developer of end-to-end solutions for the hospitality industry, announced the general availability of their joint EMV-certified solution. With Shift4’s DOLLARS ON THE NET and SilverWare’s Avrio POS, table and quick-service restaurants, bars, private clubs, assisted living communities, corporate/institutional cafeterias, hotels, stadiums, casinos and more can simplify and secure their payment processing and improve their business operations and profitability. http://www.shift4.com, http://www.silverwarepos.com **
DATA SECURITY AND CYBER ATTACKS
- Atlantis, Paradise Island Provides Notice of Data Security Incident -------------------------- Atlantis, Paradise Island Provides Notice of Data Security Incident Atlantis, Paradise Island announced that a recent data security incident may have compromised the security of payment information of some customers who used debit or credit cards at food and beverage and retail locations at the Resort between March 9, 2016 and October 22, 2016. http://www.atlantisbahamas.com **
- Valcartier Hotel Installs dormakaba Saflok RFID Electronic Door Locks - ISHP Selects Safemark as 2016 VQA Recipient - SALTO Systems Launches New Hospitality Website - DESIGNA is Awarded Contract by The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (PANYNJ) - Princeton Identity Upgrades Access Control System with Biometric Iris Recognition at Elder Care Facility --------------------------
- DSE 2017 to Offer Four Professional Certification Programs - Hospitality Industry Icon, Bill Marriott, Named Ernst & Young 2016 U.S. Entrepreneur of the Year - TECHPitch, Editor’s Choice Awards and Tabletop Challenge winners celebrated in New York --------------------------
- AHLEI’s Revised Certified Hotel Administrator (CHA®) Offers Modular, Online Content - HSMAI and Libris Release Special Report on Hospitality and Travel Industry Use of Visual Assets -------------------------- AHLEI’s Revised Certified Hotel Administrator (CHA®) Offers Modular, Online Content The American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute (AHLEI) has developed new preparation and exam materials for the Certified Hotel Administrator (CHA). The CHA is the most prestigious certification available for hotel general managers and hospitality executives. The revised review resources are offered entirely online, with study guide materials available for download in PDF or ePub formats. http://www.ahlei.org, http://www.ahla.com ** HSMAI and Libris Release Special Report on Hospitality and Travel Industry Use of Visual Assets The Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association (HSMAI) announced the release of its special report, "The Lifecycle of Visual Assets in Hospitality and Travel." Produced in partnership with Libris by PhotoShelter, the report offers a clear picture of how hospitality and travel professionals source, share, access, use and measure return on investment of visual assets, such as photography and video. http://www.hsmai.org/ **
PIQUED DAN'S INTEREST
- Green Lodging Trends Report 2016 - Roundtable Focuses on High-Tech Adoption in Hospitality Industry - Destination Hotels Reveals 2017 Trend Forecast in Fifth Annual ‘State of the Meetings Industry’ Survey - 2017 Luxury Travel and Hospitality Trends Revealed at Inaugural Travel Trends Summit - Netflix and Streaming Video Are Replacing Hotel Pay-Per-View Entertainment - How Technology is Turning Buildings into Butlers --------------------------
A defendant in a lawsuit involving large sums of money was saying to his lawyer, "If I lose this case, I'll be ruined."
"It's in the judge's hands now," said the lawyer.
"Would it help if I sent the judge a box of cigars?" asked the defendant.
"Definitely not!" said the lawyer. "This judge is a stickler for ethical behavior. A stunt like that would prejudice him against you. He might even find you in contempt of the court. In fact, you shouldn't even smile at the judge."
Within the course of time, the judge rendered a decision in favor of the defendant. As the defendant left the courthouse, he said to his lawyer, "Thanks for the tip about the cigars. It worked."
"I'm sure we would have lost the case if you'd sent them," said the lawyer.
"But I did send them," said the defendant.
"What? You did?" the lawyer asked.
"Yes, that's how we won the case," his client replied.
"I don't understand," said the lawyer.
"It's easy," said the defendant. "I sent the cheapest cigars that I could find to the judge, but enclosed the plaintiff's business card."
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