Vocal assistants, the future of Hospitality

The market of vocal assistants  is constantly evolving, with an increase of 187% in the last three months. From Amazon to Google, virtual assistants are increasingly intelligent and performing, able to give informations, suggestions and even keep company.  According to Google, the demand will raise to eight billion in 2023, with the immediate consequence that users will  look for similar conditions even during their journeys. The increase of this in houses technology is encouraging the use of vocal assistants in external contexts too. Over 100 vocal assistants have already been installed at Cedars Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, to help patients to communicate with nurses in real time. At Boston Children’s Hospital vocal assistants provide logistical and administrative informations such as shifts and the number of empty seats in the department. MSC Crocieres uses the artificial intelligence of Zoe, the digital assistant with vocal activation:  it answers to beyond 800 questions and can also book specific services.

In hospitality’s field the voice has the best potential, even if it is a business still at the beginning: if a guest finds in his room  a device like Amazon Alexa, hotels can reach the “customization” that operators have always tried to implement, to make the guest feel welcomed, always “followed” by someone through the most natural of the instruments, the voice. America anticipated this trend: from the biggest to the smallest ones there is no hotel that has not seen with curiosity the possibility to implement this kind of technology in its offer. Marriott has already selected some hotels to install the personal assistant Amazon Alexa. Hilton’s Ceo says : “I think hotel owners understand that technology is the way to go because now customers expect hotels to adopt smart elements. Managers of big hotels have to demonstrate to individual hotel owners that this technology can  simplify operations and also increase revenue potential, for example through cross- selling. It improves sales opportunities and offers the possibility to improve hotel experience through the guests’data.” . The vocal assistant, calibrated according to the main target of the structure, represents a reception avaiable h24 for hotel guests. According to a recent analysis by Capgemini, 49% of travelers declare to choose the hotel according to the hi-tech characteristics of the rooms, and 41 % considers really exciting the possibility to interact with new features in its favourite hotel. Almost all users prefer to receptionists, brochures and websites the convenience of a smart assistant, which speaks  only when spoken to.

 

The vocal assistant also lightens the workload of the staff: it’s perfect for conveying requests such as extra towels or the need to clean a room. Vocal assistants make every process faster, it can reduce the chances of error and give to staff more time for operations that require empathy or specific skills. Voice assistants give a touch of luxury to all levels. The customer will always remember the difference between a structure with smart devices and a structure, exactly equal to another. If furnitures are compatible, a vocal assistant controls the lights, regulates the temperature and other wonders of domotics. In addition, vocal assistants can support more than one language and allow guests to ask the hotels for informations without translation. Virtual assistants really have the rights cards to transform the customer’s experience and are constantly evolving: according to experts, they will soon become as essential as smartphones.

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