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Aloft makes visitors at home by providing in-room mobile streaming

Starwood's Aloft Hotels is providing travelers at its New Orleans Downtown location with the capability to stream their mobile devices on in-room televisions through a portal in which opt-in users will be able to view Chromecast-enabled platforms.

Customers staying at Aloft Hotels' New Orleans Downtown location will be able to interact with the hotel brand?s new pilot in which users can stream their smartphones and tablets on room televisions through a Chromecast-powered device. The new device creates a secure network with which users can stream any application that is enabled with Chromecast capability. 

"RoomCast offers Aloft guests the opportunity to use their own phone, tablet, laptop or mobile app to enjoy watching what they normally enjoy when they are home, but while on the road," said Sarah Downing, Vice President, global guest Initiatives at Aloft Hotels. "They can do this for free, without entering any personal information, and still continue to use their devices for personal use such as playing games, checking email and texting friends and family. 

"It puts the guest in control of their experience ? their content ? on their schedule," she said. "Additionally, guests will not interfere with other guests as each room has its own personal area network with a RoomCast device and password, so it is safe and secure."

Aloft with streaming capabilities 
Aloft?s visitors can stream video when in their hotel rooms without having to create a new account on Chromecast or any other portal. The solution, named RoomCast, creates a wireless personal area network that provides its own specific password for users to connect to. 

Guests will be able to connect to the secure network on devices with the password provided in the room. Once connected, when users open up streaming apps that have Chromecast availability, a button will appear within the app.

For instance, users who want to stream Netflix can open the streaming app and select the Chromecast symbol that indicates capability. Users can press the button, which automatically allows streaming. 

Aloft is piloting the program at its 188 rooms in New Orleans. The idea is to allow seamless streaming without forcing customers to download a new app or register for a new account. 

Mobile pushes
The hotel brand also tapped into MTV?s pull on social media for a series of musical performances, leveraging Instagram, Facebook video and Snapchat Discover to cater to a young, trendy demographic (see more).

Starwood Hotels made a strong push to spruce up events and conferences held at its properties with its new ProMeetings mobile application, which enabled event planners who belong to the brand?s rewards program to submit requests directly to employees for immediate fulfillment (see more).

"Mobile is important if using your phone to access the cast-enabled apps, but hotel guests can use iPads, tablets, laptops and any device with WiFi access," Ms. Downing said. "Streaming will not interfere with personal use by using any of these devices."