Hotel System

  • 26 January 2019
  • 3 replies
  • 546 views

I travel quite a bit, one thing I miss or wish I had when in the hotel is a good sound system to pay my music\podcasts. I think the better hotels would be open to a complete system. How I see that working
•Registering with the hotel wifi using your room number. Marriott, Hilton and most others use this method to prevent
people leaching free wifi.
•Sonos would need to develop a new enterprise back end that would acknowledge that registration\checkout and know
which speakers are in what room. The tie into the registration would also allow you to know which user devices are in
what room.
•Adding a function to the app would grant access only to those devices that in a room.
•Device security is always a concern. So Provisions to cable secure the speakers.
•Upon check out the registration of the device would be wiped.

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I travel quite a bit as well, but in addition to all the issues listed above, the first problem I could see is noise complaints. I know when I hear good music coming from my Sonos speakers at home, I just want to TURN IT UP!!! Imagine the frequency of noise complaints at a hotel equipped with Sonos in every room. Might as well just tote around a good bluetooth speaker or even headphones at that point. Would love the "at home" feeling, but sadly, I don't see this becoming a reality.
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I like the idea, but there are few factors that would keep such a system from being a reality.

- You're correct that Sonos would have to build an enterprise back end, in order to secure guest access to their room speaker(s) and those speaker(s) only. They always would need additional functionality in the control apps, so either a new Sonos app for this purpose or beefing up the existing app.
- Sonos speakers currently hold all the local home library indexes and steaming account credentials in the speakers themselves, not in the control devices (your phone) or in the cloud. So guests would need to spend time setting up their streaming accounts on each visit or Sonos would need to store that data in the cloud, pull it from your home account, something of that nature. A bit of a departure from what Sonos currently does, and not something that a lot of Sonos customers would want to happen.
- You're also correct that theft would need to be taken account, but along with that, so does price. I get that higher end hotels will spend more on a room, but they still don't want to overspend on a sound system. Sonos would be expected to give a big bulk discount. Given that they'd already have to do a lot of development to get this done, I'd doubt that there would be a lot of room to make this profitable.
- Voice control could be a concern. People may be concerned that the hotel is listening in and violating privacy if the speakers had voice control.

If I were a hotel chain, and given some of the info above, I'd look at partnering with Google or Amazon for this sort of thing rather than Sonos. I'll explain using Amazon as an example, although I believe the would operate in just the same way.
- There are many many more users with Amazon accounts than Sonos. Advertising that you have Amazon in your hotel rooms will draw in more guests than Sonos, even at the higher end I'd think.
- The speakers are cheaper, and you could probably even put dots in the cheaper hotel rooms/chains while providing more high end (maybe even Sonos Ones or Beams) speakers in the more expensive locations. I would even imagine that it can be looked at as an advertising venture where Amazon provides the speakers at or below cost. And then there is the data that Amazon would get with this.
- Amazon is cloud based. All your streaming credentials are already in the cloud, so there is no rework here. In fact, I'd set it up so a user can link their hotel account with their Amazon account so that the speaker is automatically setup and showing as a temporary speaker in your Alexa/Amazon music apps when you check in...removed when you checkout. There really doesn't need to be any concern for guests accessing different speakers since this is currently not possible.
- Amazon is more than just music as it can be linked to your calendar, uber account, etc If amazon knows you will be in the hotel for several days, it could even schedule deliveries directly to your hotel room.
- Amazon also has video services, through firetv. This could be tied in so guests can view their videos and purchase/rent videos (perhaps at the typical hotel markup)
- If a guest does not want to have voice control or use an Amazon account, the speakers already have Bluetooth, and could be used as simple Bluetooth speakers. Or perhaps removed if the guest doesn't even want them in the room.

As I said before, I really like the idea. Make the hotel room feel just like home. I just don't think is positioned nearly as well as Amazon/Google to get that done.
Userlevel 7
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I travel quite a bit as well, but in addition to all the issues listed above, the first problem I could see is noise complaints. I know when I hear good music coming from my Sonos speakers at home, I just want to TURN IT UP!!! Imagine the frequency of noise complaints at a hotel equipped with Sonos in every room. Might as well just tote around a good bluetooth speaker or even headphones at that point. Would love the "at home" feeling, but sadly, I don't see this becoming a reality.

I considered that, but figured whatever system in place would have volume limits in place (Sonos has this already). I wouldn't think it would be a bigger problem than TV audio already is.