How 5G Will Help Make Hotels Feel Like Home

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How 5G Will Help Make Hotels Feel Like Home

By Michele Dupré, Group Vice President of Verizon Enterprise Solutions - 04/02/2019

There’s no doubt that 5G is a revolutionary technology, with its super-fast speeds, massive bandwidth and latency many times faster than the blink of an eye.

But how does the hospitality industry leverage this revolutionary technology?

Hotels face a unique challenge.

5G promises to bring technology like artificial intelligence and machine learning to the forefront and better combine the digital and physical worlds.

Hospitality, is still a people-first industry, and whether traveling for business or pleasure, guests want to feel like a welcomed visitor, not a piece of digitally curated inventory.

However, 5G can be used to connect people in ways we’ve never seen before, from check-in to check-out.

According to GlobalWebIndex, the average person has 3.4 electronic devices and usually brings a few of them wherever they go. Hotels often find themselves facing huge surges in bandwidth as guests settle into their rooms at roughly the same time and the first thing they do is try and connect to the Wi-Fi.

5G will provide faster data speeds and carry a massive amount of data for a large number of simultaneous users. So users in high density areas – like airports, stadiums or urban areas – can still experience the fast speeds and low latency of 5G service.

Therefore, it will easily accommodate the deluge of traffic that comes with a building full of guests streaming movies and music or using Skype or Face Time to catch up with family.

Video conferencing for business is increasingly important as clients staying on their own or as part of a conference or company meeting rely on streaming video to incorporate participants from around the world.

But as useful as a better internet experience for guest is, 5G brings much bigger opportunities for hospitality providers because when you unburden the restrictions of bandwidth, you can push the possibilities of technology on a much grander scale.

As hotels are already trying to incorporate smart home elements into individual rooms, 5G will allow each room to be a fully capable “smart room” with dozens of Internet of Things (IoT) sensors monitoring every aspect from temperature, to lighting, to plumbing.  5G will enable even the largest hotels with hundreds of rooms to have thousands of sensors regularly updating their status.

Beyond simply transmitting the data, 5G can power edge computing to analyze large amounts of information. Enabling hotel chains to have a smarter understanding on the status of thousands of units, from occupancy to the exact time between when a room issue is called in to when it is resolved.

The power of 5G can revolutionize the speed and convenience with which guest interact with the front desk and concierge.

Beyond a basic touch screen kiosk, companies like New Zealand based Soul Machines are creating digital assistants when combined with 5G and artificial intelligence can understand people’s requests and read and respond to their emotions and body language.

Imagine digital kiosk equipped with an artificial concierge who can direct you where to go for dinner and sympathize with you after a frustrating travel experience.