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HITEC 2014: Cloud-based In-Room Control System Personalizes Guest Experience

Evolve Controls, delivering enterprise wireless solutions to hotels that increase guest loyalty and experience, today introduced the Room Operations Center (ROC), the next generation of in-room control systems.  ROC enables both guests and hotel staff to centrally manage the in-room experience, with complete command, control and reporting capabilities over a full range of devices, ranging from lights and thermostats to televisions and window treatments.
The ROC was unveiled today at the HITEC hospitality technology conference, being held here in Los Angeles, where Evolve is an exhibitor.
“We’re very excited to deploy Evolve’s ROC platform at our property as a way to better personalize the guest experience,” said Meade Atkeson, General Manager at the Westin Georgetown in Washington D.C.  “Our staff will have real-time visibility into system configurations and performance from any web enabled device, and as the platform is 100% cloud based, there is little burden on our staff.
“Our favorite aspect is that ROC is an open platform focusing on technology convergence and automatic updates. Receiving new feature sets over the air, and providing us the ability to freely explore a truly connected guest experience will give us an additional competitive advantage in a highly competitive market,” Atkeson added.
ROC devices communicate wirelessly in each guest room, and connect to the Azure Cloud infrastructure from Microsoft. As a result, hoteliers receive automatic updates and features in a “hands-off” manner, ensuring that their systems are always up-to-date.  The Azure platform also ensures the security of sensitive data through multiple layers of encryption and redundancy that are constantly upgraded.
ROC also lowers the ongoing IT costs for hoteliers through its Software as a Service (SaaS) delivery model, which means hotels no longer require an on-premises backbone.  In addition, ROC’s full fault-tolerant mesh network limits potential downtime; if a module fails in one room, it can be easily and quickly replaced without affecting other rooms on the property.  The SaaS approach also means hotels can slash their CapEx costs, and more accurately budget for OpEx costs that may change over time as their systems expand. 
As an open platform, the Evolve ROC is extensible, specifically designed to easily integrate applications into its operations.  Applications, such as performance reports for housekeeping, engineering, IT and more, can be easily viewed by managers from any location.  Alerts can be sent, notifying hotel personnel of failed devices, or thermostats that may be running in unoccupied rooms.  As a result, ROC enables managers to more effectively control ever facet of operations throughout their properties.
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