Travel iPhone Apps :: OpenWays

openways Open SesameOpen your hotel room with your iPhone, Blackberry or Andoid. Like a fairy with a magic wand, French company OpenWays turns your mobile phone into a hotel room key.  The French think of everything!

Following in the footsteps of Marriott, who tested smartphone check-ins in the dark ages (ok, it was only 2006), InterContinental has begun trials to enable check-in and hotel room entry at two US properties: the Holiday Inn Chicago O'Hare Rosemont and the Holiday Inn Express Houston Downtown Convention Center.

How it Works

OpenWays App Details

  • Free
  • Works with iPhone, Blackberry and Android
  • Download software to your smartphone from OpenWays
  • When you check in online, the OpenWays system sends you an encrypted audio code that unlocks your door, and texts you your room number
  • When you arrive at the hotel, bypass the front desk and unlock your door with your phone
  • The technology uses "crypto acoustics", which generate a unique sound set to unlock your hotel room door using a system that could work with almost any existing electronic hotel lock

What this Means

  • Assuming testing goes well, this could be a huge shift in the way we interact with hotels
  • No more checking in at the front desk, and no more worries about losing a key or keycard, just, um, losing your phone
  • The hotel can remotely eliminate any code that might be a security risk, and codes expire when you check out
  • Hotel room keys or keycards won't make a complete disappearing act for the time being due to situations like travelers arriving at their hotels with a dead phone battery or the like

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[photo by bwchicago]