IoT, Internet of Things
The internet of Things or IoT refers to a system that comprises of interrelated computing devices, objects, UIDs including animals or people with unique identifiers, machines that can be mechanical or digital and capable of transferring data over network that does not requires any kind of interaction inclosing human to human or human to computer communication.
It is a type of network in which stipulated protocols and information sensing equipment for conducting exchange of information and communication is used for connecting anything with the internet for achieving smart recognitions, administrations, monitoring, and tracking. There are three categories for internet of things including people to people interaction, people to machine interaction and machine to machine interaction.
IoT is a network that comprises of vehicles, physical devices, home appliances and numerous other items that are implantations in software, sensors, electronic devices and connectivity enabling all of these items for connecting and exchanging data between them. After the advent of this technology, businesses and consumers have begun to learn the benefits associated with the implementation of IoT that can be used in almost every aspect of life from garage door openers to applications in the smart industry enhancing the productivity by reducing the cost and losses with the help of high energy consumption solutions.
Numerous industries have started the use of IoT for increasing the efficiency of their operations, increasing the understanding of their customers for delivering proficient and effective services to them, improving the decisions and increasing the value of their business.
The History of IoT goes back to 20th century, when the co-founder of the Auto Id center an MIT named Kevin Ashton, mentioned internet of things in his presentation he developed for Procter & Gamble. He introduced this word in his presentation for incorporating a new trend in the industry and his primary objective was the introduction of radio frequency ID (RFID) to the senior and executive management of P&G. He presented his ideas about internet that it will be the coolest trend of 1999. Moreover, in addition to this presentation made by Kevin Ashton, A book written by MIT Professor Neil Gershefeld named “When Things Start to Think” in 1999 also discussed the concept of IoT with its emergence and its future in the coming years without specifically mentioning its name.
The convergence of internet, wireless technologies, micro services, and micro-electro-mechanical systems has resulted in evolving the IoT. The silos developed between information technology and operation technology have been reduced by this convergence and ultimately it has resulted in driving improvements through the increase of efficiency in analyzing the machine-generated data more effectively.
The monikers embedding and pervasive computing firstly discussed the idea of connections between devices in 1970’s that shows that it is an old concept but Ashton is the pioneer of this word internet of things after decades in 1999. Coke machine installed at Carnegie Mellon has been identified as the first internet appliance in which IoT system was used to the check the status of the machine by the programmers for determining that an individual wants a coke or they are only visiting the machine.
IoT has evolved from the machine to machine communication in which a network is used to connect machines with each other that does not requires any kind of human interaction. M2M can be defined as making a connection between a cloud and a device for managing and collecting data. IoT is identified as the next level of M2M in which data is collected and shared with the help of a sensor network that is capable of connecting billions of people, systems and other application with a sensor network comprising of billions of smart devices.
The four segments of hospitality industry include lodging, recreation, food, and traveling. The use of IoT in two segments of hospitality industry is discussed below
Lodging refers to that segment of hospitality industry in which guests stay temporarily in the rooms of the hotels and avail services like breakfast, bed, and lodge for making themselves comfortable.
IoT has effectively contributed in making the stay of guests more memorable and comfortable through the addition of some exceptional services. The implementation IoT in the hospitality industry has enabled the guests to adjust their lights and thermostat from their beds with a single click and they can interact with the front desk officer as well from TV or their mobiles in the automated rooms.
A combined employment of sensors, machine learning, and artificial intelligence enables autonomous indoor delivery through robots to perform hotel room services. These robots can be used for operating elevators and navigating crowds. These robots can perform delivery tasks to the room more quickly and safely.
On the other hand, it has enabled the hotel management to become aware of some important events like the time when they are done with their meals when they want the service manager to collect from them. IoT has changed the integration with the personal gadgets of the guest as they can unlock their rooms from their mobile devices. Moreover, the mobile integration has enabled the hotel management to store the preferences of the customer, which is very beneficial for the hotels and they can take advantage of this information in their next visit and provide customizations on their previous preferences, ultimately providing a seamless experience to their clients.
As the name indicates food and beverage segment of the hospitality industry includes the restaurant experiences provided by the hospitality industry.
The IoT has enabled the customers to order and check the menu of their restaurant on their mobiles; they can get instant information about their order through IoT. IoT has emitted the use of paper for billing purposes and online payments have optimized the process of billing and paying. Online reservations and selection of music is also a benefit of IoT in the food and beverage sector. On the other hand, the IoT has enabled a more effective management of expiration dates of the food and stock availability alerts.
Marriot International is using IoT technology to enhance the customer experience. The company has teamed up with numerous companies including Samsung and Legrand recently for launching the first internet of things in the global hospitality industry for creating hotel room according to their choice.
Hilton has also been using the technology of IoT in their rooms for providing better experience to their customers. Customers can avail all the facilities like temperature adjustment, room unlocking from mobile devices and ordering from their mobile in Hilton hotels.
- It has enabled the organizations for improving the experiences of their guests by providing unique digital experiences and services that are helping them to differentiate their brand in the pool of competitor and intense competition.
- It has helped in optimizing their processes with the help of cost reduction, productivity increase and development of new services in the sector.
- It has assisted in understanding their guest more effectively particularly about their needs and preferences, which has ultimately enabled them to offer more desirable and personalized services and products.
- The proactive monitoring of the critical infrastructure and the creation of more efficient and automated processes has made the hospitality industry smarter and efficient.
The most prominent and common challenge of IoT in the hospitality industry is cyber-attack and security breaches. IoT has brought everything online and has connected them with each other for optimization of the process as well as increase the efficiency which increases the probability of threats. Hackers can exploit the digital infrastructure of the hotel in which every device is incorporated.
Another challenge encountered in the implementation of IoT in the hospitality industry is the increasing job insecurity of the employees. The employees associated with the hospitality industry including room service managers, front desk officers, elevator operators have developed job insecurity because the advancement of IoT will ultimately replace humans from this job and artificial intelligence will take place.
IoT has been transforming numerous industries with the introduction of various technological advancements associated with internet of things and opening vast areas for the business to conquer in the future. similar to the other industries, the hospitality industry has also been using IoT for transforming their way to success and enhancing their performance level through altering the processes and operations of the industry for gathering data, users interface and the automated processes involved in the their businesses. The combination of IoT and technologies has emerged some new paradigms in the hospitality industry like user mobility and data analytics.
IoT is playing a crucial role in providing comfortable and customized stay to the customers. It can be observed that IoT has penetrated in almost every aspect of hospitality industry. It has enabled the customers to call and connect with the customer service with a single click at their mobile devices. The integration has enables them to set their thermostat. Lock and unlock their rooms from their mobiles. The increased integration has enabled the hotel to store the information about the preferences of the customers in their memory which can be used by the hotel afterward, for their next visits. They can deliver customized products and services to the customers in the future that will definitely bring an exceptional experience to them.
IoT is not only beneficial for the customers but it has also some enormous positive impacts on the hospitality industry. The application of IoT has resulted in optimization of the process that resulted in cost reduction and increase in productivity. The continuous monitoring has enabled the hotels to track the trend of energy consumption that has made power consumption scheduling very easy according to the load at specific time which ultimately help the business in reducing electricity cost and saves energy as well. Different kind of alerts and sensors installed in the buildings can alert the management earlier than ever before that helps them in controlling and managing the malfunction at time resulting in minimum loss. It has emerged as a key for energy saving, manpower and cost of the hospitality industry.