America’s First Voice-Activated Hotel Rooms Are Coming

"Open the mini-fridge doors, HAL"

August 26, 2016 9:00 am

If you’re watching Mr. Robot, you might remember a scene from early this season when one woman’s digitally tricked-out apartment went on an Internet of Things rampage. Temperates were lowered. Stereo volumes raised. It was as if all her appliances decided to fight back, together, at the same time.

Hopefully a new system at selected Aloft Hotels will fare better.

The brand, the designated “hip” part of  the Starwood group of hotels, has long catered to digital natives, whether with robot butlers and their “TIGI” (“text it get it”) emoji-based room service system.

This new initiative, available at two locations (Santa Clara and Boston Seaport) ups the ante. Each guest will be able to commandeer a personal iPod during the stay, with Siri-directed mood lighting, DJing and temperature control. “Today’s early adopter, hyper-connected global traveler wants a level of personalization unlike ever before,” said a hotel rep. Fair enough — and this makes sense for a business trip.

But here’s hoping our next vacation leads us to less of this kind of connection — not more. 

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