Coming Attraction at IH/M&R Show: Signature RFID by VingCard + NFC-Compatible Cell Phones

  • ASSA ABLOY Hospitality
  • 10.26.06
VingCard continues to unlock the future of RFID technology with its newest electronic-locking solution Signature RFID.

For the first time in lodging history, guests will be able to use their Near Field Communications (NFC) compliant cell phones in addition to RFID key cards to open their guestroom doors. The solution will demo at the International Hotel/Motel & Restaurant Show in New York, Nov. 12-14  in Booth No. 3138.

NFC is the new short-range wireless technology that combines the functionality of a reader and a card into one device, and it is being implemented in new generation cell phones this year. Through a joint collaboration with NXP (formerly Philips semiconductors), hotels equipped with VingCard RFID locks will be able to offer remote checkin. Guests will receive booking confirmation number, room number and an encrypted room key access code through SMS (Short Message System), prior to the arrival at the hotel, and they will avoid long lines at checkin going straight to the room. Guests will be able to open the room with their NFC-cell phone.

“The preview of Signature RFID at HITEC [Hospitality Industry Technology Exposition & Conference] in June 2006 was overwhelmingly received,” said Marc Freundlich, president and CEO of VingCard Elsafe North America. “Before the product launch, we listened to hoteliers tell us that they wanted an RFID lock that is design centric, operations friendly and convenient for guests. We delivered on those requests plus provided an open platform system that is compatible with the leading RFID ISO standards (ISO 14443 A-MIFARE, ISO 14443 B, ISO 15693) and the new NFC (Near Field Communication) secure transaction platform.”

Part of Signature RFID’s appeal stems from its open platform architecture, Freundlich said. Earlier systems, and those offered by other hospitality security vendors, are not compliant with all the leading RFID standards, secure transaction protocols, or compatible with the other RFID devices.

”Hotels do not want to invest in RFID if they are limited to one standard,” he said. “We designed Signature RFID to support all the leading standards for maximum flexibility. Now customers can choose what is best for their application rather than having to guess which RFID standard to follow.”

The technology itself behind Signature RFID is a differentiating factor from one hotel to the next because of its leading edge security and convenience for the guests. The system is perfect for harsh environments where traditional magnetic or contact smart cards readers may not fare well, such as beachfront properties and other wet climates. Since the interface between card and reader is contactless, the reader is sealed so that it is virtually impervious to harsh climates.

“No doubt guests will be impressed by this system every time they use it–whether they enter their rooms with an RFID keycard or use their NFC-ready cell phones,” Freundlich said. “We are extremely proud to be the first hospitality security company to bring NFC technology for access control via cell phones to the hospitality industry, and we are thankful for our partnership with NXP and the major cell phone manufacturers who helped develop this technology.”

Signature RFID is modeled from Signature by VingCard (a card-based system which made its debut at the IH/M&R Show in 2005) in which only the key-card reader and door handle are visible, enabling the door hardware to blend in with the hotel environment.

Signature RFID is designed to give guests and hotel staff more…

  • More guest satisfaction: Unmatched ease of use for guests of all ages
  • More security: Offers anti-cloning technology for all guest and staff cards
  • More adaptability: RFID carriers adapt to any hotel style: business, resort, spa, all-inclusive, etc..
  • More selection: Provides access today to next generation technologies, including NFC-cell phones

Also like Signature, the system’s design flexibility offers different aesthetic finishes and colors to be applied to the RFID reader. Designers’ collection handles also are available. Signature RFID provides a new, interactive experience to guests while enhancing the image and design of your hotel environment. Finally, the Signature RFID reader also has been designed to fit on the same mounting plate as the Signature magnetic reader.  This makes for an incredibly simple upgrade without disrupting operations.

“VingCard always has been focused on providing the best security technologies to protect guests’ valuables and owners’ assets,” Freundlich said. “We are proud of Signature and Signature RFID and the convenience these solutions offer to guests and the brand differentiation afforded to hotels. We sincerely value our customers and the feedback that they provide to us regarding our products and services. At VingCard Elsafe, we listen.”

Ken Brown, VingCard senior executive vice president of sales and marketing, said visitors to the IH/M&R Show in New York will have the opportunity to learn more about Signature RFID, NFC cell-phone technology, and how RFID locks can help establish brand differentiation, by visiting the VingCard Booth No. 3138.

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