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Hotel Chain Plans Phone-Based Check-in and Room Access

Soulskill posted about 4 months ago | from the but-i-love-digging-those-keycards-out-of-my-wallet dept.

Cellphones 120

GTRacer writes: Forbes reports that Hilton Worldwide, international hotel operator, is rolling out smartphone-based guest tools allowing self-service check-in, access to a virtual floorplan to select a room, and (in 2015) actual door access once checked in. The author states the drive for this technology is the growing influence of the swelling ranks of Millennials, who "[...] have a very strong inclination toward automated and self-service customer service." The security risks seem obvious, though.

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Risky (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47583293)

"Ah crap, my phone just died... I'll charge it when I get back to the hotel roo-- shit."

Re:Risky (1)

adamstew (909658) | about 4 months ago | (#47585047)

I think you would just go to the front desk and have them issue you a traditional key in this scenario.

Re:Risky (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47585133)

THANK YOU BUZZ KILLINGTON!

Fucking anti-social Millennials (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47583331)

I'm so sick of things being "automated" at the expense of the customer. Fucking Self-Checkouts everywhere - companies get to lay off a few dozen workers per location, replace with buggy scanning hardware & software. Sure it takes the customer a longer time, but that's just more time for them to look at impulse buy and sell their children more candy at the checkout. It's not making it any more convenient, or quick, for me or anyone else in line - it's making it so the anti-social behind the monitor type Millennials don't have to talk to actual people. My wife is one of those - she can't even make a fucking phone call if there's a chance company X has a "WebChat!"

Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47583413)

My wife is one of those - she can't even make a fucking phone call if there's a chance company X has a "WebChat!"

Don't know, your wife seems pretty social to me when I visit her during your business trips.

Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (2)

Zero__Kelvin (151819) | about 4 months ago | (#47583513)

You wouldn't say that if you saw his wife!

Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (2)

CRCulver (715279) | about 4 months ago | (#47583443)

Sure it takes the customer a longer time, but that's just more time for them to look at impulse buy and sell their children more candy at the checkout.

Are self-service checkouts surrounded by impulse-buying items in the US? I am very familiar with self-service checkouts in both Finland (S-Market) and Poland (Tesco), and there are no products next to the machines. There is a row of candy items that one might pass on the way to the self-service checkout, but the queue never gets long enough that one would be stuck next to this display long enough to really notice it.

And if it takes you a noticeably longer time to go through the self-service checkout than the human cashier, you might just be clueless at technology, which isn't something I'd expect on Slashdot. After a couple of purchases through these machines, what buttons to press and where to swipe one's card quickly becomes muscle memory.

Finally, I haven't seen a buggy self-service checkout for nearly 10 years now: kinks in the beginning were quickly worked out.

Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (1)

penix1 (722987) | about 4 months ago | (#47583617)

Are self-service checkouts surrounded by impulse-buying items in the US?

Yes... At least at the Kroger in my neck of the woods...

And if it takes you a noticeably longer time to go through the self-service checkout than the human cashier, you might just be clueless at technology, which isn't something I'd expect on Slashdot.

It isn't the /. user holding things up it is the granny before him and the twelve other grannies before her. Add to that the one human checkout lane that is backed up around the block because nobody can stand waiting for hours while granny tries to figure out the machine.

Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47583975)

But every check-out in the US tends to be populated with "impulse buy" stuff, usually women-oriented or gossip magazines, gum, candy, cold drink coolers...

Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47584029)

Are self-service checkouts surrounded by impulse-buying items in the US?

Yes... At least at the Kroger in my neck of the woods...

And if it takes you a noticeably longer time to go through the self-service checkout than the human cashier, you might just be clueless at technology, which isn't something I'd expect on Slashdot.

It isn't the /. user holding things up it is the granny before him and the twelve other grannies before her. Add to that the one human checkout lane that is backed up around the block because nobody can stand waiting for hours while granny tries to figure out the machine.

Where do you live where the grannies use the self-checkouts? They're usually in the regular line trying to pay with checks.

Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47584691)

This. I like the self checkout lines because around here it seems like only people with a clue use them so they move fast.

Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47583635)

It's been about 3-4 years since I've had a serious problem with self-checkout machines.

I had one issue at Stop & Shop where the fucking thing wouldn't let me proceed without scanning a Stop & Shop card first, but I got around that by saying "fuck that" and walked over to the express checkout isle where there was no line anyway. This being more of a problem with process as opposed to the machines themselves.

Dude, this is the US (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47583727)

Any "convenience" on our part is charged a fee even though it saves the business money in not having to hire someone to deal with it.

An exxample:

The Atlanta Symphony.

I could walk over and catch the person they hired to sell tickets during their limited hours - which isn't during my lunchtime - or I could buy on-line there by cutting out the overhead of a person and yet get charged for a "convenience" fee because I was forced to buy when there wasn't a clerk.

See?

Web shit saves money but yet I am charged for a "convenience" fee even though going through the web saves everyone time and money.

Yeah, Capitalism.

Oh! The Atlanta Ballet and symphony had the nerve to call me for donations.

They can get it out of their outsourced asses for all I fucking care!

Re:Dude, this is the US (1)

CRCulver (715279) | about 4 months ago | (#47583833)

Considering that an orchestra is going to have a human cashier working at least some hours anyway, it only makes sense that people paying through other payment methods get charged enough to help pay the salary of said cashier.

Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47583951)

In Philadelphia (the grocery stores I've been to, anyway) there's some candy nearby, like you said, but nothing that major. Sometimes donuts, but since the donuts are good, I usually plan on getting one anyway.

Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (1)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | about 4 months ago | (#47584031)

Sure it takes the customer a longer time, but that's just more time for them to look at impulse buy and sell their children more candy at the checkout.

Are self-service checkouts surrounded by impulse-buying items in the US?

Dude, pretty much every checkout has a crapload of impulse-buy crap in the US, self-service or otherwise.

For me, there isn't really such a thing as a self-checkout, since my trips to the store are either A) major grocery runs, where I have way too much crap to even go to the self-serve machine, or B) buying booze and/or tobacco, which means I've got to talk to the attendant and show my ID anyway.

But I do like not having to worry about some teenaged idiot putting my bread, eggs, and cleaning chemicals in the same bag.

Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (1)

Em Adespoton (792954) | about 4 months ago | (#47584323)

in Canada, self-service checkouts have the impulse items surrounding the lineup area to get to the kiosks, similar to how they're positioned for the lineups to get to actual cashiers.

I'm no millennial, but I almost always use a self-service checkout at stores who have functioning* kiosks. I've spent my time as a kid doing those sorts of jobs, and tend to be better/faster at using the scanners than a checkout clerk -- so why spend 5 minutes waiting in line and an interminable time waiting for the clerk to process all my items, when I could breeze through a kiosk with no lineup in 30 seconds? I still talk to the store staff on the way out, but no longer have to deal with a lost 20 minutes in my day.

However, in Canada, there are still plenty of stores with buggy kiosks -- one of the common scenarios is kiosks running Windows Embedded with a small HD; the transaction logs have to be manually collected/cleared, and the longer they're left without doing that, the slower the interface becomes until it eventually goes unresponsive.

The other issue is places that haven't calibrated their scale response time correctly, so the kiosk keeps flagging up errors if you're not quick enough to drop your item (whether it be an over-sized item or a carton of eggs) onto the scale.

One of my local vendors also recently underwent ownership change, and the new owner's policy was that every credit card signature required employee verification -- so if you use an American Express at one of their kiosks, the thing starts blaring out its alarm as soon as you sign the pad, and then you have to stand and wait until some clerk has the time to go to the main kiosk console and hit "accept" (they never visually inspect, as they have no reason to -- if your signature doesn't match, there's no step 2; they can't decline the purchase under local laws and cardholder agreements).

But as I said; I still opt for the kiosk when possible -- if it's a small purchase, I can be in and out of the store in a matter of minutes; if it's a large purchase, I save the difference in time it takes me to process the items vs a worn out cashier.

The only people that don't benefit here are the extra staff that act as storage help and double as checkout overflow help when things get busy. But there are other jobs to do these days that pay better for the same skill set.

Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47583545)

It's people like you that make Millenials like me not want to talk to people like you. So maybe it's just you?

Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (4, Funny)

NotDrWho (3543773) | about 4 months ago | (#47583597)

Yeah, but for only $50 I can use the "Hilton Special Room Service" app to request Paris Hilton to meet me in my room and give me herpes in person.

Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (5, Insightful)

jklovanc (1603149) | about 4 months ago | (#47583673)

I am definitely not a Millennial and I would love this service. If I could get off the shuttle and go directly to my room I would be in heaven.

anti-social behind the monitor type Millennials don't have to talk to actual people.

Have you really ever been "social" with a desk clerk? When I am checking in I am usually tired and want to lie down. Being "social" is the last thing on my mind.

she can't even make a fucking phone call if there's a chance company X has a "WebChat!"

I love web chat. Here are a list of things I like about web chat
- I can do several things while I web chat. I am not stuck waiting listening to hold music.
- I can re-read what was said in case I missed something.
- I can edit my message for clarity.
- I can usually get a transcript for later reference.
To me, text chat is just as social as voice.

Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (4, Insightful)

dave562 (969951) | about 4 months ago | (#47583769)

I am always social with the desk clerk. Being friendly with the clerk is the number one way to get a complimentary upgrade.

Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47584003)

I am always social with the desk clerk. Being friendly with the clerk is the number one way to get a complimentary upgrade.

So the new computerized clerk won't exhibit that kind of human prejudice towards specific appearances or personality types?

That's cool.

Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (1)

dave562 (969951) | about 4 months ago | (#47585565)

By all means, let's further remove interpersonal communication and support the notion that computers do things better... and people whose jobs have not yet been replaced by computers, should act more like them.

ProTop - The "personality type" that you seem so against is one who can ask simple questions like, "How you are doing today?", genuinely pay attention to the answer, and treat the person who you are dealing with like a person, who has a life outside of work and a larger purpose than taking your credit card in exchange for a room key.

Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (1)

jklovanc (1603149) | about 4 months ago | (#47586343)

one who can ask simple questions like, "How you are doing today?"

Too many people ask that question but don't really care what the answer is. If I am in a line of people waiting to check in that kind of empty conversation just wastes time. I think the GP was trying to point out that we aren't all "silver tongued devils" who can talk a clerk into giving us an free upgrade.

Frankly I do not want a personal relationship with a someone I may see only twice during my lifetime.

Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (1)

dave562 (969951) | about 4 months ago | (#47586659)

I read this and get the sense that you do not feel that the person behind the desk is worth the time it would take to treat them like you would treat a friend.

Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (1)

jklovanc (1603149) | about 4 months ago | (#47587475)

I think there is as assumption in your statement that I only treat friends with kindness and respect. That assumption is false. I treat everyone kindly and with respect. This is like all those people on Facebook that have thousands of "friends" but have never actually even met or talked to most of them. To me "friend" is a very special title. A friend could call me up at 3AM and ask me to come get them from the side of the road. Would I do that for a desk clerk I met once? No. I don't go through life with the objective of gathering "Friends" I will never meet again.

Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (1)

jklovanc (1603149) | about 4 months ago | (#47584189)

To me "social" is talking about personal, meaningful things. Friendly is a mode of pleasant conversion. While acting friendly is part of being social, one does not have to be social to be friendly.

Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47584091)

I love web chat. Here are a list of things I like about web chat
- I can do several things while I web chat. I am not stuck waiting listening to hold music.
- I can re-read what was said in case I missed something.
- I can edit my message for clarity.
- I can usually get a transcript for later reference.
To me, text chat is just as social as voice.

Agreed, there are so many advantages to it that the only time I'll tolerate a phone call is if it's a situation where I'll likely need to demand to speak to their manager right away.

Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47583681)

I have the exact reverse opinion - and pseudo-full disclosure, I'm not a millenial - far from it. All jobs humans do that machines could do drive me mental. My #1 complaint is the movie theatre: really, taking stubs, reading it, and telling me what f**king theatre my movie is in? It's on the piece of paper - hell my transit system already does this.

Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (1)

Waffle Iron (339739) | about 4 months ago | (#47583697)

I bet you're that guy at the front of the line who misremebers the price of what you bought and makes them send the bagger sauntering to the back of the store for a price check, and then doesn't even start to open his 19th century checkbook until the final tally is rung up, and then fills the whole check out glacially topped off by a pointlessly legible signature, then finally hands the check over so that the cashier can slowly scribble the entire contents of your drivers license over it.

And you wonder why I'm so thankful for self checkouts, even though I'm not even nearly a "millenial".

Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (1)

NJRoadfan (1254248) | about 4 months ago | (#47583741)

Like any other form of automation, its an attempt to cut costs by eliminating workers. The millennial thing is just smoke and mirrors to play it up as a positive change.

Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47583871)

I'm so sick of things being "automated" at the expense of the customer.

I agree, which is why I now have a personal policy of yelling at any phone maze I run into until I get connected with a real person.

Fucking Self-Checkouts everywhere - companies get to lay off a few dozen workers per location, replace with buggy scanning hardware & software.

As a customer, I prefer the single employee doing overwatch for 8 checkout stations than the 4 employees working slowly at the 4 active lines out of the 58 strewn across the front of the store.

Sure it takes the customer a longer time,

I don't know what sort of people you are talking about.

but that's just more time for them to look at impulse buy and sell their children more candy at the checkout.

If you can't handle your children at a self checkout, wait in one of the two active lines.

It's not making it any more convenient, or quick, for me or anyone else in line

Except for that whole thing that one employee watching 8 checkouts is still 4 times the throughput if we accept your assumption that it takes everyone twice as long to do a self-checkout as with a traditional cashier.

- it's making it so the anti-social behind the monitor type Millennials don't have to talk to actual people.

As an introvert, I say 'finally!' there's been a vicious oppression of talkative assholes influencing the norms my entire life. I don't want to engage in idiotic small talk (not to be confused with idiotic Smalltalk [wikipedia.org] , that can be fun) when I'm trying to get something done. If the conversation is not beneficial to my goal (industrious or recreational), don't make me waste my breath responding to your need for recognition.

My wife is one of those - she can't even make a fucking phone call if there's a chance company X has a "WebChat!"

From the sound of it, she'll be single soon. Can I have her AIM username?

Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (1)

paysonwelch (2505012) | about 4 months ago | (#47584231)

We vote with our wallets. Don't use the self checkout lines and encourage others to not do so. I enjoy those small social interactions with strangers.

Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (1)

rhodium_mir (2876919) | about 4 months ago | (#47584779)

I love the self checkouts. I don't want to have to talk to some pretty young lady working the register when it's Saturday night and I'm buying a frozen pizza and a bottle of lube.

Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (1)

Parts09 (1656793) | about 4 months ago | (#47584943)

You are absolutely right... We need to do a better job of utilizing the services offered or we will lose them.

People think, "oh the company is putting self checkout so that I have the option to check myself out, that is nice". No they are doing it because it is cheaper than having a cashier. I notice that people already are 'conditioned' that they are to bag their own.

I remember in the good old days... hehehe... In the good old days, not only would there be someone there to bag your groceries, they even had services where they would send it down a chute to a couple guys standing around in the cold winter and you would drive your car into the garage type thing and they would put the bags in your trunk.

This is inconceivable nowadays. Imagine the corporate profits that would be lost by actually hiring people to do jobs!

Re:Fucking anti-social Millennials (1)

AuMatar (183847) | about 4 months ago | (#47585675)

Given that every time I try to check into a hotel I spend 20 minutes waiting for my tun then waiting for the clerk to type in the info I tell them, I doubt it will be slower. My guess is it will save me 19 minutes. Another great win for automation.

cool today... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47583341)

hacked tomorrow.

great idea.

Re: cool today ... hacked tomorrow (1)

davidwr (791652) | about 4 months ago | (#47583459)

Why put off until tomorrow what you can do today?

not new (1)

jfp51 (64421) | about 4 months ago | (#47583345)

The check-in part at least is nothing new, Fairmont has offered email check-in/out for a few years at least.

The App will also bleep at you (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47583353)

when you dare use a competitors hotel. The bigger the competitor, the bigger the annoyance your phone will be to you until you relent and return to the fold.

Sorry, the is no frigging chance that this will get installed on my phone and I spend on average 200 nighes a year in the bloody things.

Hmmmm... blackhat conferences? (5, Funny)

blueshift_1 (3692407) | about 4 months ago | (#47583355)

So, free hotel rooms for all at the next blackhat conference >:D

Re:Hmmmm... blackhat conferences? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47583393)

So, free hotel rooms for all at the next blackhat conference >:D

Sure and plenty of free spit, scat and cum in the food they order through room service.

PS. You might also want to rewash your cups and glasses as well.

Hotel Door Locks (3, Insightful)

TechyImmigrant (175943) | about 4 months ago | (#47583367)

It's not like hotel door locks are secure. You're just trading off one big fail for another.

Security... (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about 4 months ago | (#47583385)

Given that hotel keying tends toward assorted mag-stripe flavors, which are certainly more obscure than RFID/NFC(mag stripe readers and writers aren't terribly expensive or in any way controlled; but nobody is pushing to build them in to random consumer electronics); but which have only whatever testing the vendor gave them and security-through-obscurity, I'm not seeing why the security risks would necessarily be 'obvious'.

Yes, connecting anything to the network raises the stakes; but I'd be shocked if the existing systems are exactly flawless, even ignoring the human element of social engineering the front desk staff or the practice of finding the cheapest maids available and issuing them full access for room cleaning...

This will probably go poorly; but it might actually go poorly in a visible enough way that they have to fix it or risk embarassment/lawsuits, rather than just having it go poorly more or less forever.

Re:Security... (1)

slew (2918) | about 4 months ago | (#47584859)

This will probably go poorly; but it might actually go poorly in a visible enough way that they have to fix it or risk embarassment/lawsuits, rather than just having it go poorly more or less forever.

I vote for the go-poorly-more-or-less-forever...

The current state-of-the-art hotel security fail [spiderlabs.com] has pretty much flew under the public radar after a brief buzz, and apparently was so forgettable that it was even forgotten by many of the readers of slashdot [slashdot.org] ...

Hook-ups (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47583401)

Does this mean that if I meet a woman in the hotel bar, we can touch phones and use NFC to give her a key to my room? Sexy!

Re:Hook-ups (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47583629)

"Swipe right to send this match your room number and key!"

But phone is a good thing too (5, Interesting)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | about 4 months ago | (#47583423)

They've had automated check in in Europe for some hotels for 25 years. The locked entrance has an ATM-like machine in the little foyer. Put in your credit card, pick a room type, and it printed a slip with codes for the front door and your room.

And yes, they had a live person on site -- it ate my card and the call button got her out of bed at 3 am to get it. :)

Re:But phone is a good thing too (1)

antdude (79039) | about 4 months ago | (#47583949)

That hotel didn't have night shift workers? :(

Re:But phone is a good thing too (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47584493)

That hotel didn't have night shift workers? :(

They were busy. Didn't you read his post?

Re:But phone is a good thing too (2)

rworne (538610) | about 4 months ago | (#47585071)

They have them in Japan too. The love hotels, where couples go for a few hours of "together time". In the western-themed room, Tarzan-themed room, or the UFO-themed room.

Visiting a clerk is considered embarrassing for the couple, so the check in process is automated.- pick your theme off a display (lit themes are available) pay and go to the room.* They've been doing this for 20+ years now.

* Some ways to pay are truly automated, others are more old fashioned where the clerk is obscured. Anyhow, there is a person *somewhere* with the finger on the "not welcome here" button if they don't like who they see in the lobby on the CCTV.

More like "We don't want to hire milennials" (1, Interesting)

Joe Gillian (3683399) | about 4 months ago | (#47583451)

I don't get what the article's author is thinking, exactly. There have been dozens upon dozens of articles written about how millennials aren't doing things - they aren't buying cars (except cheap used ones), they aren't buying houses, they aren't getting married. As someone who is under 30 and technically a millennial, I can attest to this. I know exactly zero people under the age of thirty who have jobs that pay $20 or more an hour - the highest I've seen is $17.50, for a girl who works one cube over from me.

I'm a temp who gets paid $10 an hour to do half the workload of a person who gets paid several times what I do and drives a Lexus to work, on top of some pointless data entry that is supposed to be done by an automated program (but isn't because they're taking forever to code it). Six months (and counting) at the same place, where I've been told I have exactly zero chance of ever getting hired on a permanent basis for actual money. I don't exactly make enough money to be financially independent, let alone go out on trips and stay at hotels. Between student loan payments, car insurance payments, and going back to school in the fall (I have a BA but it's not doing me any good) I have a net income of very, very little.

To me, this sounds more like "We had millenials working our hotels for minimum wage, let's get rid of them and replace them with an automated system. That way, we don't have to pay them."

Re:More like "We don't want to hire milennials" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47583543)

>I know exactly zero people under the age of thirty who have jobs that pay $20 or more an hour

That is exactly how it has always been and it is likely to continue to be the case for those under 30.

Once you're older than 30, you'll hear your friends getting better paying jobs, perhaps even get one yourself. When you're 40 you'll be earning a decent salary, and that will likely continue until you are 50. After 50, your salary will either stay the same or diminish and you'll retire.

It just seems to be the circle of life. My best advice is to stop fretting and make the best of it!

Re:More like "We don't want to hire milennials" (1)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | about 4 months ago | (#47584085)

>I know exactly zero people under the age of thirty who have jobs that pay $20 or more an hour

That is exactly how it has always been and it is likely to continue to be the case for those under 30.

Bullshit.

As I told OP, I was making over $20/hr when I was 20, and my wife has been making over $20/hr since she graduated college at the age of 25.

Maybe you and everyone you know just got the wrong education/jobs.

Re:More like "We don't want to hire milennials" (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about 4 months ago | (#47584899)

When was that? I know exactly NOBODY who can in this economy get fresh out of college and expect more than a temp job, payment optional.

Re:More like "We don't want to hire milennials" (1)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | about 4 months ago | (#47585053)

When was that?

5 years ago.

I know exactly NOBODY who can in this economy get fresh out of college and expect more than a temp job, payment optional.

Are any of them accountants with an additional Bachelor's in Economics, who graduated from a globally-respected university business program in the top 2% of their class?

'Cuz that's how she did it.

Re:More like "We don't want to hire milennials" (1)

Em Adespoton (792954) | about 4 months ago | (#47584447)

Actually, that's not how it has always been. The "magic number" at one point was 13 years old; in recent history (past 50 years) it tended to be 21 years old. Over the past decade or so, it has creeped up to 30. This goes for all the things mentioned; cars, jobs, marriage, kids.

The reason? Should be obvious: baby boomers. They're keeping their money as they retire, and are often spending it in out-of-area places. As a result, the job shortage that still exists is filled by temps because it's the only way the companies can afford to sell things to the boomers at the prices they expect. If they raise prices and hire full-time employees, the boomers will go elsewhere to spend their disproportionate amount of money.

Once the boomers start to die off, we'll start to see the pendulum shift the other way, as local demand rises, job vacancies rise, and the value of local skilled labor finally rises. Of course, that's another 15 years off, by which point the millennials will be the establishment and it'll be the next generation that gets the benefit of having an earlier workforce transition.

Re:More like "We don't want to hire milennials" (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about 4 months ago | (#47584915)

Can't we somehow speed up ... hmm...

Why am I suddenly against general health care?

Baby boomer here (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47587501)

I can't afford to retire.
After the last divorce where I was painted at the evil bastard for not being there for her (I was ill with Cancer) she took just about everything. I did manage to win one thing and that was not to pay her Alimony because she was a $200K a year Exec and because of my cancer I'm almost unemployable.
I just about have enough to live on from a job without healthcare and no prospects. Thank god for the VA.

Who are the lucky ones now eh?

Re:More like "We don't want to hire milennials" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47583563)

I doubt they're being bias towards millenials at all. I'm sure they want to fire anyone and everyone they can to up the profits.

Re:More like "We don't want to hire milennials" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47583649)

To me, this sounds more like "We had millenials working our hotels for minimum wage, let's get rid of them and replace them with an automated system. That way, we don't have to pay them."

The only group I can actually see this appealing to within the Millenial cohort are "road warriors." I work on lots of project-based stuff for an IT company, but I generally stay in one place. Other guys go on the road 300+ days of the year...one guy I know traveled so much he gave up his apartment and sold his car. Typically, these folks are young, single and perfectly fit the "mobile device first" use case. The other thing that road warriors thrive on is "status", and that makes sense -- unless you're very strange, that constant travel regimen gets very old and you want that first class upgrade, goddamnit! Go check out places like the FlyerTalk forums, and you'll see -- some people have a very unhealthy obsession with their frequent flyer/guest accounts. An app that constantly pushed these folks' status buttons and made them feel super-special for using their hotel chain all the time might appeal to them and create more loyalty. They also might appreciate just being able to walk into the hotel and crash without talking to anyone, especially if it's the same desk clerk they've seen for the last 6 months.

Re:More like "We don't want to hire milennials" (1)

Austerity Empowers (669817) | about 4 months ago | (#47583659)

I can't swing a dead cat (millennials don't like animal abuse) without hitting a millennial making way, way over $20/hr. They're all doing this new fangled processor design or software development stuff, I still don't think that stuff will take off.

Oh boo hoo (2)

Viol8 (599362) | about 4 months ago | (#47583675)

It was the same for everyone in their 20s. What do you expect , a $100K pay packet the minute you leave university? I'm in my 40s now but I spent most of my 20s working in dead end IT jobs and saving up until I could put down a deposit for a mortgage.

Seems all the millenial generation does is whinge about how tough there life is. Get over yourselves FFS!

Re:Oh boo hoo (2)

CRCulver (715279) | about 4 months ago | (#47583855)

I'm in my 40s now but I spent most of my 20s working in dead end IT jobs and saving up until I could put down a deposit for a mortgage.

During the heyday of the American middle class, a man working in a factory (and the sole spouse working) could pay for a home within five years in cash. That you had to rely on a mortgage to own a home shows you came of age already during the decline that has only quickened with today's millennials. It wasn't always like this.

Re:Oh boo hoo (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | about 4 months ago | (#47584525)

Normal Rockwell has been dead for years.

Re:More like "We don't want to hire milennials" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47583701)

As a 31 year old, I completely agree with you. I currently find it unlikely that I'll ever buy a house, a car, or even have children by choice unless I find a winning lottery ticket on the street. I find it a sad state of affairs that I work 45 hour weeks and see no escape in sight, then tax season comes along...

Re:More like "We don't want to hire milennials" (1)

edawstwin (242027) | about 4 months ago | (#47583767)

Most successful people work much more than 45 hours per week. It's just a matter of priorities.

Re:More like "We don't want to hire milennials" (1)

WrongMonkey (1027334) | about 4 months ago | (#47584467)

A matter of priorities is right. If you have a type of job that you enjoying doing for its own sake, then working more than 45 hours per week might be something of a success. But working just to accumulate wealth that you don't have the time to enjoy is not success by any measure.

Re:More like "We don't want to hire milennials" (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about 4 months ago | (#47584971)

I learned that you're either successful or work 45 hours a week.

Success can be measured by more than just money. I measure it by the metric "quality of life". And that requires me to have a life besides working when I can actually spend the money I earn.

I mean, why bother earning it if you have no time to spend it?

Re:More like "We don't want to hire milennials" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47584377)

I actually put in about 20 hours of actual effort a week, I get job offers all over the place, and just bought a new car. What are you doing?

Re:More like "We don't want to hire milennials" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47583945)

Well, if you think you can do your boss's business better than he can, open your own business.

You won't be keeping a job that can be automated cheaper than you are doing it. Note that if the minimum wage rises above $10, your job will likely disappear.

If you are paying off student loans for a BA that didn't help you get a better job than a $10/h temp job, you studied the wrong thing; what do you expect?

Re:More like "We don't want to hire milennials" (1)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | about 4 months ago | (#47584069)

I don't get what the article's author is thinking, exactly. There have been dozens upon dozens of articles written about how millennials aren't doing things - they aren't buying cars (except cheap used ones), they aren't buying houses, they aren't getting married. As someone who is under 30 and technically a millennial, I can attest to this. I know exactly zero people under the age of thirty who have jobs that pay $20 or more an hour - the highest I've seen is $17.50, for a girl who works one cube over from me.

From 18 to 21, I had a job starting out at $18/hr base, which was $23.75/hr base when I left. All the overtime you could eat, and triple pay for the first 8 hours on holidays.

Where, you may ask? Why, in an industrial manufacturing facility (specifically, a glass factory making bottles for one of the largest booze corporations in the world) of course! In fact, I'd still be there if I hadn't fallen for the "you won't make good money if you don't go to college" myth.

Post-college education, I've been lucky to break $15/hr. Too bad my body can no longer handle that kind of work, or I'd be back at "the plant" in a heartbeat.

Re:More like "We don't want to hire milennials" (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | about 4 months ago | (#47584563)

Too bad my body can no longer handle that kind of work, or I'd be back at "the plant" in a heartbeat.

Yep. I see lots of 20 and 30 year old guys in construction / fishing / general labor making $40 - $70 / hr on a high school GED. Works OK until you hit 50 and you realize that your back / hips / knees weren't designed to do this for another 30 years.

Save up your paychecks until then. It gets lonely in the bunkhouse after a while.

Re:More like "We don't want to hire milennials" (1)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | about 4 months ago | (#47584777)

I'm only getting into my 30's myself, but working at that plant was the kind of back-breaking nastiness (combined with all the chemicals involved in the process) that destroys your body in a hurry. Back then I loved it, thought of it as getting paid to work out 16 hours a day, but the "lifers," who would be there until retirement, all discouraged me from pursuing a career there, namely because they knew what that place does to a person's health.

Still, there's a part of me that looks back on those days, stuffing 80 lb iron and brass molds into a 1200 degree blast furnace by hand, with a nostalgic fondness. Probably the dumb part.

Re:More like "We don't want to hire milennials" (1)

alen (225700) | about 4 months ago | (#47584309)

and if you had any brains you would BUY A HOUSE as soon as you can because it freezes your housing payments in time
suffer and save for a few years, buy it on 5% down with an FHA loan if you have to but buy a house. there is no rent to be raised. your salary will go up faster than your property taxes

in gen x the average age of buying a house dropped to 26 from 38 and people still had student loans to pay. the millenials seem to be dummies wanting to rent everything and spend all their money drinking and eating out.

for the record i bought my first home at 30, my second at 36. both were NYC coop apartments. looking to move out west and buy a mcmansion with my equity in a few years now because i can buy a giant house for less than i'm paying now

Re:More like "We don't want to hire milennials" (1)

sp0tter (1456139) | about 4 months ago | (#47585259)

and if you had any brains you would BUY A HOUSE as soon as you can

Lol. every single millennial that I know who bought a house regretted it. Home ownership isn't for everyone.

Risk versus Opportunity (1)

handy_vandal (606174) | about 4 months ago | (#47583465)

"Security risks" from people self-subscribing to hotel door access?

Some would call this a "Profitable vulnerabilities" situation.

What could possibly go wrong? (1)

tquasar (1405457) | about 4 months ago | (#47583475)

Your room temperature is set for one hundred and ten degrees. Twenty lobster dinners and fifty bottles of Dom will be delivered shortly. Thank you for your patronage.

Re:What could possibly go wrong? (1)

Em Adespoton (792954) | about 4 months ago | (#47584465)

In most parts of the world, that first one could mean that they deliver the lobsters to the room in a live state.

Does the Millenial hype actually match reality? (2)

ErichTheRed (39327) | about 4 months ago | (#47583485)

The last dotcom boom seemed to be mostly about eyeballs and getting people on the web. Now the popular meme is that Millenials are the new hot group to market to, and they are constantly glued to their smartphone of choice 24/7. However, just like the popular images of the fedora-wearing tech hipster and others, how much does this picture of a hyper-connected, distracted, wants-to-be-advertised-to-24/7 Millenial match with actual people?

Sure, you can easily point out tons of people watching movies on their 4" screens, listening to music through tiny earbuds and devouring social media. I'm just not sure _everyone_ under 30 is like that. Stories like this that predict a relatively small technology enhancement will fundamentally change the nature of commerce were pretty common at the end of the last boom too. Couple that with some of the (admittedly less insane) IPOs lately and billion dollar valuations on websites that don't make money right now, and you're looking at the last gasps of inflation for Bubble 2.0. My prediction is that social media, tablets, apps and so on will live on, but they're going to be less front-and-center in peoples' lives as people get tired of it. Everyone I've ever talked to who has an iPad or other tablet says the same thing -- it's a good content consumption device but they still need a computer for anything more complex than email.

The security implications of hotel room access through smartphone could be interesting. Done properly, it's probably as safe as Prox badges or traditional keys. However, given that this is a large hotel chain, I guarantee they're going to farm the app development out to the rock-bottom bidder. This happens all the time with large companies that say, "OMG we need tablet and phone apps NOW!!" It's kind of a given that version 1.0 is going to have problems...plus, I'm not sure everyone is so averse to dealing with people that they would want to check into a hotel without stopping at the front desk. (Hint: If you're not a jerk to the front desk staff, and ask for something cheap like a room upgrade, you're likely to get it, which is something an app's business logic won't do unless you're Triple Executive Platinum 1K Plus.)

Re:Does the Millenial hype actually match reality? (2)

phorm (591458) | about 4 months ago | (#47583567)

Beyond that: (at any hotel I've attended recently) the front desk still verifies my credit card is present along with my photo ID. Without this step, it seems even easier to book a room on a fraudulent/stolen card. I'm sure criminals will love it!

Not very well thought through, I'm afraid.

Re:Does the Millenial hype actually match reality? (1)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | about 4 months ago | (#47583837)

they also need a card for holds?

what happen if some uses a pre paid phone with no id to get a room and they?

Run up the PPV bill?

Clean out the mini bar?

Take stuff from the room / damage it?

Order lot's of room service?

and then just auto check out?

Re:Does the Millenial hype actually match reality? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47583621)

...of the fedora-wearing tech hipster...

Linux is now wearable???

Re:Does the Millenial hype actually match reality? (1)

gunner_von_diamond (3461783) | about 4 months ago | (#47583645)

how much does this picture of a hyper-connected, distracted, wants-to-be-advertised-to-24/7 Millenial match with actual people?

As for the millenials as a whole generation, it matches up pretty well. 24/7 access to information on smartphones. We (yes, I said we, as in millenials) don't need to ask people for information when we can get it right away. Which leads to impatience and wanting everything now.

I'm just not sure _everyone_ under 30 is like that.

You are absoloutely right. Not everyone under 30 wears fedoras and is a tech hipster. But,

a hyper-connected, distracted, wants-to-be-advertised-to-24/7 Millenial match with actual people

lines up almost exactly with every millenial because we all grew up with the internet and smart phones (for the most part). If we do everything else automated on our cell phones, it makes sense to have automated hotel check ins.

But like you said, the security implications will be interesting! We'll see if it will be easier or not to break into a hotel with a smartphone vs. traditional hotel room break ins.

Re:Does the Millenial hype actually match reality? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47583825)

24/7 access to information on smartphones.

And yet they still manage to be among the most idiotic demographic I seem to have to deal with.

Re:Does the Millenial hype actually match reality? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47585735)

Yup, we're the group that crashed the economy, bought more in houses than we could afford hoping to "flip" to try and make a quick buck, invested blindly without thinking, and created the biggest deficit the country and ever seen, then chose to blame all our problems on the generation WE fucking RAISED. oh wait...thats you guys, I keep forgetting.

Re:Does the Millenial hype actually match reality? (1)

paysonwelch (2505012) | about 4 months ago | (#47584275)

Actually the docom boom was tech-everything, eyeballs on the web was just a no brainer. There was a company in the great lakes area I think that was allowing you to shop for groceries online and you would get a delivery the next day (This was like '97 or 98!). Working prototypes for smelling odors through the internet were being built. Back in the 90's (cue Portlandia theme) we were digitizing the world man. I'm sure others will have many great examples of failed 90's tech. So it's not just a millenial thing this is just the advancement of automation. The projected figure is that 50% of the jobs available today won't be available in 20 years because they will have been automated out of existence.

Re:Does the Millenial hype actually match reality? (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about 4 months ago | (#47584845)

Does it matter? Show me the Millennial who has money. Even if they earn big they blow it instantly on their toys.

Re:Does the Millenial hype actually match reality? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47585707)

Yup, nothing like sweeping generalizations of whole groups of people to be completely accurate. Funny, I keep being TOLD I'm a lazy good for nothing whinging person who expects everything handed to me on a silver platter, but my 45 hours of work on top of 18 credits throughout college, my now modest house (is a house a toy?), and my $60k salary ( man Im just ROLLING IN THE DOUGH) seem to speak the opposite. Your generation had lazy good for nothing hippies who expected the world to do what they wanted, guess I should call everyone of your group "flower child" and "Star fucker" right? Seriously, for a generation who gave mine nothing more than a shit economy and constant onslaught of personal attacks for more than a decade, you all have an awfully skewed perspective of what yours has accomplished.

Where's the Paris Hilton joke? (2)

damn_registrars (1103043) | about 4 months ago | (#47583489)

Shouldn't there be something along the lines of

it hasn't taken much more than a text message to get inside Paris Hilton for years

By now?

Re:Where's the Paris Hilton joke? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47584445)

Right here: http://tech.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=5481463&cid=47583489

Erin Edwards (1)

ThatsNotPudding (1045640) | about 4 months ago | (#47583803)

I suspect they won't be getting an endorsement from Erin Edwards...

Re:Erin Edwards (1)

slew (2918) | about 4 months ago | (#47584747)

I suspect they won't be getting an endorsement from Erin Edwards...

I suspect you mean Erin Andrews...

I like this idea (if done securley) (1)

robstout (2873439) | about 4 months ago | (#47583887)

Anything that makes check-in faster. If I made a reservation for the room, the hotel already has my info in the system. Being able to finalize my checkin with a few swipes of my phone instead of waiting for a person to become available sounds good to me. My biggest concern is the hotel having a secure enough app (and infrastructure) to make it hard for people to crack the system and/or spoof my room key.

Dare doing that if a security con is in your hotel (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about 4 months ago | (#47584833)

You'd be surprised just how many people claim they have the president's suite... And who have the access to it to prove it!

Old (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47585119)

Already done here: http://www.omenahotels.com/
It's cheap, the rooms are okay and all of them can't possibly be right next to a loud air conditioning unit .

Thank You Hilton (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47587011)

Now I can slum in High Comfort nearly anywhere, well anywhere where my payers want to put me for a 'job', at zero cost to me and zero cost to my payers.

Sweet!

Made my Friday.

Toodles.

Good. (1)

jtownatpunk.net (245670) | about 4 months ago | (#47587227)

I'd like to be able to skip the whole "check in" thing. If I'm on some long-haul road trip, the last thing I want to do at 11pm is be depressed by interacting with someone who's life has led them to working the swing shift at the Super8 at some crossroads in BFE. It'd be great if I could get a Moons Over My Hammy at Dennys while I figure out which room is most isolated and book it. Drive across the street to the hotel, go straight to my room, crash for 8-9 hours, shower, $5 tip for the maid, back in the car, on my way having never had to interact with anyone at the motel.

In fact, to heck with Dennys. Bring back the automat. With self-service gas stations, hotels, and food, I could cross the country without ever interacting with a single person. Bliss. For me and everyone else.

Re:Good. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47587565)

Drive across the street

Say, you aren't by any chance an American, are you...?

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