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Showing posts from March, 2019

Machines, but not workers wanted in Alibaba's futuristic hotel

Alibaba, one of the largest e-commerce companies based in China, debuted a new prototype of hotels in the future, where machines provide the service. Let’s see what Alibaba’s futuristic hotel offers.


The futuristic hotel
The hotel of the future is called FlyZoo. This 290-room property is located in Hangzhou, China, the headquarter of Alibaba. FlyZoo maximizes the guest-machine interactions but minimizes guest-staff interactions.

A more powerful app
Travelers, for example, can book and check-in into a hotel room with the FlyZoo App, as many other hotels have already offered. What makes the FlyZoo App stand out is that travelers can choose the room they want to stay, including on which floor the room is located and to which direction the room is facing.
Possibly because of the country’s strict security controls, mobile check-in is only available to Chinese citizens. Foreign travelers still need to use a kiosk located in the hotel to complete the check-in process.
Facial recognition that en…

Airbnb acquires HotelTonight amid its transition into a travel enterprise

Airbnb was in the headline again last week. Airbnb is set to acquire HotelTonight, an OTA (online travel agent) that focuses on last-minute bookings through its website or the mobile app for hotel stays.

Why is HotelTonight good for Airbnb?
Even though Airbnb was commonly known for its dominant position in the room-sharing market, the company has been aiming to become a mega travel enterprise. Besides hotels, Airbnb also competes directly with OTAs.


Airbnb to buy HotelTonight for an undisclosed amount from CNBC. For example, Airbnb has begun selling hotel rooms for a while. At the time when Airbnb celebrated its 10th anniversary in 2018, there were over 24,000 boutique hotels listed on Airbnb, a growth of 520 percent over the previous year. Airbnb also hired an aviation expert last month to oversee the company’s new plan of transportation services.

According to The Wall Street Journal, adding more hotels to its listing has become one of Airbnb’s strategies to boost its growth before the I…