A well designed hotel app will, for example, allow customers to check themselves in and out of the hotel. The customer can arrive, check themselves in, and this will activate the door controls within the app. Then they just need to head directly to their room, and they can let themselves inside. Removing the need to interact with the hotel staff upon arrival might not sound like much, but it makes a big difference to Gen Y in particular, for whom self service has become the preferred way to operate at all times. Once in the room, a mobile app can link in with any number of other hotel services, providing customers with a single hub that they can use at their convenience. The mobile app could include TV and movie ordering services within it, as well as the room service ordering menu, allowing a customer to settle themselves in and order their meal while watching a movie – with the added benefit of no risk that the person taking the room service order over the phone makes a mistake and gets the order wrong. Really innovative hotels are tapping into the phone’s other features too to enhance the customer experience. For example, phones have geo-location functions which mean the hotel can tell, through the app, where the customer is at any point of time (with their permission, of course). This in turn means that a customer can quickly order a drink through their app, and the hotel staff will instantly know where to serve it to, be that the poolside, the lounge or the customer’s room. Get the full story at eHotelier