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Siegel Sez

October 02, 2020

Siegel Sez

First, I get Zoomed out and now I am COVID-19ed out. Yes, I like making up words. Thankfully we are in October so I am thinking that in 90 days 2020 will be done. Even if COVID-19 is still with us, which I know it will be, at least this disastrous year will be behind us. I am probably just coming up with something positive to look forward to. Actually, there is much to look forward to. I am not a big fan of virtual events but Cyber HITEC looks like it will be both interesting and fun. Cyber cocktail parties? We shall see how that gets pulled off.
Hopefully everybody reading this Siegel Sez is a subscriber to Hospitality Upgrade either in print or the digital edition. We just completed our Fall issue and it will be out in a couple of weeks and honestly, it is amazing. We let the vendors speak and they did well. We looked at how CIOs and other technology leaders from the hotel world are dealing with limited staff and budgets but many demands. Our fall issue traditionally looks back at our recent CIO Summit but, of course, there was not one this year, so creatively we asked past attendees to share their own pictures so we could all look back at past events. The pictures they sent were great, but I have one favorite and nobody is in that picture. Those who were with us in Denver will get it. Of course, there is lots of serious stuff in the issue including a look back at a leader from the vendor side we lost who was a great friend of mine. It was remarkably interesting in these trying times to see a list of systems that have recently been installed. It is nice to see that many hoteliers are taking advantage of the downtown in business to implement new technology. Many are positive that the turn around in the industry is not as far off as one might think though it will be a slow climb back to where we were in 2019. If you are not a subscriber I strongly recommend you go to www.hospitalityupgrade.com/subscribe. You will be glad you did. A great issue will soon be on its way.
Along with Zoom and COVID-19 I probably could have added contactless. That comes with the territory since there are so many offering these solutions and the hospitality industry believes it is absolutely needed to survive. Doug Rice in his Definitely Doug column that follows shares that beyond touchless the industry needs to address other areas; social distancing, health and sanitation and communications. As only Doug can do, he does a great job highlighting the things that are being done and what needs to be done. After Doug’s column we have the latest tech news for the industry which there is a fair amount. Who knows, maybe we have reached bottom and the slow climb has started.
Do I get credit for not bringing up the wacky Presidential Debate that happened this week? It was tempting but not sure this is the place to share political views. But with that said, November 3rd can’t get here soon enough. The comments that I have been receiving from friends and industry colleagues all over the world this week made me wince and I will leave it at that. What a week.
Here now is Definitely Doug’s column and the news. If you haven’t registered for Cyber HITEC yet go to www.cyberhitec.com and do it now. How nice that so many thousands from all over the world can attend and not have to travel to be there. Then again, isn’t that why the hotel industry is hurting? We will see you at the end with this week’s attempt at you-know-what. There are days we all need a laugh, all we can do is try. And that we do!

Definitely Doug

Macro Tech Trends for the Post-COVID Future (Part 2)

In my last installment, I introduced four areas of hospitality technology that I believe have been significantly changed by COVID-19. I covered contactless technologies in depth in that first article. This week I will turn to the other three areas: social distancing; health and sanitation; and communications.

As before, I will not be calling out specific companies or products here. First, there would be far too many for me to review and qualify, given the breadth of the topic and the number of new products being introduced from existing industry players, from startups, and by companies coming from other industries. Second, many of the products are still in development and unproven. Third, while there are hundreds of new entrants that have gotten onto my radar since the arrival of COVID-19, I have to assume that there are many more that haven’t yet, meaning any list is likely to be missing viable options.

Instead, I want to highlight the technologies that can help address some of the challenges COVID has presented. Assuming you know, what you are seeking, it shouldn’t be too hard to find the companies and products that can provide it. I have covered some of these technologies in more detail in my prior columns and have included links where relevant.

I will start with technologies that help maintain or enforce social distancing. Perhaps the most visible trend is the emergence of reservation systems for things that never needed them before, but where occupancy limits now need to be enforced. The concept is hardly new, but the usage has grown exponentially around some use cases that were previously rare. It’s now common to need to reserve machines at the fitness center, swim lanes or seating at the pool, shuttle bus seats, tables at restaurants that were previously open-seating, and even a time slot for picking up breakfast to take back to your room.


Douglas Rice
Email: douglas.rice@hosptech.net
Twitter: @dougrice
LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/ricedouglas/


- Virdee Closes $2M Seed Round to Accelerate Contactless Guest-Interaction and Operational Efficiencies
Industry leaders back API-first solution to reduce owners' labor costs while elevating the guest experience in hotel, multifamily and other real estate verticals.


- Hotel Alhambra Palace Checks In with Infor for World-Class Customer Service
Infor today announced that the five-star, 108-room Hotel Alhambra Palace in Granada, Spain, has chosen to implement Infor Hospitality Cloud solutions throughout all operations, including front of house, housekeeping, restaurants and conference bookings.

- Jonas Chorum Announces Integration with Whistle Guest Messaging Platform
Jonas Chorum, a suite of streamlined, intuitive and flexible property management solutions, announces a direct integration with Whistle, a leading hotel and guest messaging platform. With this integration, Jonas Chorum clients will be able to leverage two-way text communication with guests throughout the duration of their stay.


- Dormio Resorts & Hotels and NextPax Travel Technology Announce Partnership
NextPax, provider of channel management technology and Dormio Resorts & Hotels, specialized in the rental, administration and management of holiday resorts and hotels, announce a distribution partnership. As of today, the inventory of Dormio is available on a large number of distribution channels via the connection with NextPax, including Airbnb, HomeAway/Vrbo, Holidu, e-domizil, BungalowSpecials and HomeToGo.


- Enhanced Forward-Looking Data in Amadeus’ Business Intelligence Solutions Provide Insight for Recovery
With COVID-19 significantly impacting travel trends and buyer behaviors, relying on historical data is no longer enough to plan for the future. Having access to forward-looking data has never been more important for the hotel industry than it is today, as hoteliers need a real-time, comprehensive view of market performance to successfully understand shifting traveler behaviors and implement an effective recovery strategy.


- Hotel Internet Services Launches BeyondTV MyRemote to Provide Guests with Ultimate in In-Room Convenience and Contactless Service Control
Mobile web-app offers personal smart device access to full range of BeyondTV features to reduce shared surface risks, including controlling TV functions, communicating with staff, requesting amenities and much more.

- Gansevoort Meatpacking to Upgrade Guest Experience with Comprehensive Mobile Capabilities
The iconic Manhattan hotel will offer guests a custom mobile app equipped with check-in, key, and dining functionality through the INTELITY platform


- GCommerce and The Hotels Network Announce Strategic Partnership
- Milestone Internet Marketing, Inc. Selected by Choice Hotels as a Qualified Vendor for Property Websites
- GCommerce Adds Metasearch to Its Hospitality Digital Marketing Services
- Upgrade to a New Affordable ADA Compliant Website, on "Pay-As-You-Go" Model with No Capital Expense


For more information on Marketing for 10/2/2020


- Lodging Interactive Launches Micro-Wedding Lead Generation Service with Guaranteed Leads
Lodging Interactive, a full-service digital marketing, social media engagement, and reputation management agency exclusively serving the hospitality industry, today announced the roll out of its micro-wedding lead generation service for hotels. The service has been developed to target the fast-growing small wedding market which can provide immediate revenue for properties during the global pandemic crisis.


- Aptech Offers Hoteliers Six Budgeting Tips for 2021
Aptech, a provider of budgeting and forecasting, enterprise accounting, and business intelligence solutions for hotels, is advising operators to rely on historical drivers rather than bottom line revenues to help them better plan for the days ahead. Knowing how to analyze trend data, such as driver value, will help operators forecast more accurately.

- M3 Launches M3 Insight Mobile App
M3, one of hospitality's preferred cloud-based financial and data management platforms, announced the launch of the M3 Insight mobile app, a comprehensive mobile app supporting the company’s popular business intelligence platform, Insight.


- Angie Hospitality Launches Cloud PBX Service, Modernizes Hotel Telephony and Reduces Costs
Angie Hospitality® by Nomadix, the leading provider of voice-activated and contactless technology solutions for hotels, today announced Angie PBX, a cloud phone service delivered through Angie digital guest room assistants that offers calling capabilities throughout the hotel and meets emergency calling requirements.

- Nomadix Offers Only Hospitality Gateway to Earn IPv6 Certification
Nomadix Inc., an industry leader in hospitality and MDU technology, today announced its flagship gateways are the only hospitality gateways to earn the IPv6 Ready logo from the IPv6 Forum. This rigorous certification process with verification of more than 600 test cases validates functionality and interoperability with IPv6 and equipment commonly used in ISP, hospitality and MDU networks.


- Automatically Receive Your Food Products and Update Your Costs in Seconds with Clear Sky Software's Interface to Cheney Brothers
New offering gives hospitality organizations a complete, back-office food inventory management solution integrated with a major food distributor.


- Onyx CenterSource Leverages OnyxComp in Partnership with Skift Recovery Index
Onyx will provide weekly datasets for a number of countries around the globe using its proprietary OnyxComp solution.


- FreshAir Announces Unique and Highly Effective Smoking Detection System for Hotels
FreshAir1 monitors for, detects, and proves tobacco smoking and marijuana smoking.


- Security Validation | SecValMSP Named to MSSP Alert’s Top 250 MSSPs List for 2020
MSSP Alert, published by After Nines Inc., has named Security Validation | SecValMSP to the Top 250 MSSPs list for 2020.


- IDeaS Announces Fabian Specht Future Revenue Innovator Scholarship with EHL
EHL hospitality management school scholarship to honor the legacy of the late EMEA-area vice president of IDeaS, Fabian Specht.

- Contactless Technology Partners Share Exclusive Insights in New eBook About Budgeting During a Crisis
StayNTouch, TrustYou, and OpenKey release today a new eBook for hoteliers, “Budgeting During a Crisis: What is Mission Critical for the Guest Experience?”
www.openkey.co    www.stayntouch.com    www.trustyou.com


- Introducing HospitalityVIEW, The Innovation Working Group of Global Hotel Industry Executives
HospitalityVIEW™, a new working group of global hotel industry executives, was formed to deliver high-level insights into the future of hospitality innovation. Powered by IDeaS, a world leading provider of revenue management software and services, HospitalityVIEW (Visionary Industry Executive Working group) launched with its first virtual meeting on September 17.


- Hotel Guest Jailed for Writing Bad Review on TripAdvisor
- World`s Five Largest Hotel Chains Lost $25.2bn in Market Cap Amid Coronavirus Crisis  
- AHLA Front Desk Feedback Survey of Hotels on Financial Crisis
- Forbes Travel Guide: How Luxury Hotels are Adapting to COVID-19


For more information on Piqued Our Interest for 10/2/2020


And now for you-know-what.…

An atheist is out walking in the forest. Such a stunning day! The green trees! The blue skies! The bubbling brook! The rustling of the ... actually what is that rustling? He looks around to see a huge grizzly bear emerge from the bushes just behind him. In an instant, the bear has covered the ground between them, knocked the atheist to the ground and is just bringing his mighty jaws down with the clear intent of crushing the atheist's skull like a grape. All the atheist can do is to moan out a strangled, "Oh my God".
Time stops. The bear freezes. The forest falls silent, as the clouds part and a bright light shines right down upon him. A voice now comes from the heavens: "You! You deny my existence for decades and ridicule all others who say I exist. And now, only when you need me to save you, do you even utter my name with anything other than derision. Can you really expect me to help you? And if I do, can I count on you to be a believer for the rest of your days?"
The atheist looks directly into the light and says, "Lord, you're right. Even in these extreme circumstances, it would be hypocritical of me to become a Christian, but ... but perhaps you could at least make the bear a Christian?" There is a pause, as God in his heaven reflects. And then He speaks again: "Very well."
The light disappears, and again the brook bubbles, the rabbits run free and life resumes as normal. And now the bear stills his crushing jaws to bring his massive paws together, bow his head and say, "Lord, bless this food which I am about to receive, and for which I am truly thankful."

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