HFTP Connect – Hospitality Blog

Ubiquitous Technology and Hospitality

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wifiHow many networked devices can you see, right now? Take a look around and look for anything with a network cable or a wireless connection. Most of us will probably get to half a dozen before we even start thinking about it. Technology has become such a persistent part of our lives and our society that we are very rarely more than a few feet away from the nearest portal to the world. An IDC Research study showed that 79% of people keep their phone on them 22 hours per day, 42% of American adults own a tablet, 61% own a laptop, and a whopping 91% own a cell phone. Half of those are smartphones. (Source: Pew Research) Read More »

A Recap of the First Annual Entrepreneur 20X

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0615H15E2XBlogHFTP has been extra busy working on a myriad of new projects and events and I am proud to say that one of our most recent ones — Entrepreneur 20X — was a huge success! After months of coordination, endless e-mails, phone calls and meetings, Entrepreneur 20X officially held its inaugural event on Monday, June 15, as part of HITEC 2015. Read More »

How to sell to investors: Don’t sell to investors

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0615H15BlogJB2You have a great idea, you have a team that can build it, and you have the passion necessary to see it through to completion. The next step is to get some funding and start banging away at it, right? Sure, if you want to lose control of your idea and your company.I got the chance to sit in on a fantastic panel of business experts on Wednesday and hear Lyle Worthington pick the brains of Dave Berkus, Prakash Shukla, Edward St. Onge and Ron Tarro. The discussion was well moderated and led to some great answers and insights that had more than a few of us in the audience scratching out notes. The most important takeaway was confirmed and repeated in their own way by everyone on the stage: Do everything you can to avoid investment money. Read More »

Quick discussions. In-depth analysis. Whatever you’re looking for, you can find it here at HITEC.

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0615H15BlogELWhile the Tech Talks I’ve attended the last few days here have allowed quick discussions on new hospitality topics, it’s the Super Sessions that have powered me up as the week has drawn on. These gatherings have given us a chance to dig deep on various revenue and marketing strategy topics for hospitality.Tuesday’s afternoon Super Session entitled “Move Beyond BAR & Open Your Eyes to New Revenue” was a true eye-opener for sure! The panel of speakers was comprised of Marco Benvenuti, Lou Keefe and Bill Linehan and was moderated by Jason Freed. The session allowed each expert to share his unique perspective on how hoteliers need to position themselves across all channels while encouraging the idea of varying marketing strategy with room rates, which should also be unique to each avenue. Read More »

Session Recap: Can you Reach Baby Boomers the Same Way you Reach the Millennial Generation?

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Amitava Chatterjee and Justin Tallion, Ph.D at HITEC 2015

On Wednesday, Amitava Chatterjee, Director of Digital/Travel, Hospitality and Leisure at Deloitte Consulting and Justin Tallion, Ph.D., Professor at University of Guelph spoke for one of HITEC’s educational sessions. This covered the difficulty companies face when creating marketing strategies due to the large technology gap between Baby Boomers and Millennials. Read More »


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EWP_3035-615pxWhat I love about this event the most, so far, is that it shakes me up in every sense. And I am not talking about Austin’s last standing mechanical bull on 6th Street, although that shook me up pretty well last night as well. I am referring to being inspired to look at my profession, career and ideals from a new angle, in order to find the missed opportunities. Read More »

Tech Talks for the Win

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EWP_2291p615pxWOW! We’re two days into HITEC and what a few full days it’s been. Breakout sessions. Tech talks. Keynote speakers. Oh my! My excitement continues to overwhelm me — in a good way.While the Tech Talks have seemed a little hidden in the back of the expo center of vendors, they have quickly become my favorite part of the conference. If you have not had the chance to attend one yet, picture 10 to 15 people — a mix of executives, mid-level professionals and students – all gathered to discuss and/or debate a new technology or changing behavior within our hospitality world. It’s kind of a typical brown bag lunch-and-learn session, on steroids and HITEC style. Read More »

Don’t Be Low-hanging Fruit: Promoting Safety from Cybercrime

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Cravenblog_1Tuesday morning’s keynote speaker, Joshua Klein, gave a thorough and much-needed talk about a few of the opportunities being used by today’s cybercriminals and security researchers. The crux of the issue is the layering of technology promoted by modern systems. Highly connected systems can provide huge benefits to the efficiency of your business, but can quickly reach a point of unintended effects when not enough time is spent considering the side effects of systems in aggregate. Read More »

My iHITA Experience

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EWP_2857 615pxAs attendees and exhibitors begin picking up badges and setting up booths for this year’s HITEC, what they might not know is just upstairs graduate students and professors are being evaluated on their research presentations in hospitality technology.iHITA (International Hospitality Information Technology Association) holds their Annual Conference every year in conjunction with HFTP’s HITEC. Educators and students present research in IT initiatives to meet hospitality needs. This year judges Bob Lowe, VP of Buisness Development at Shift4 and Dennis Montellano, VP of Sales at SkyWire Media both awarded Dr. Karen Lijia Xie as having the Best Presentation, Sungsik Yoon with Best Poster Presentation, and finally Dr. Christian Morosan awarded the Best Paper. Read More »

The ‘9 in 10’ Americans Now Demanding Mobile Tech Inside Their Hotels

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hotel room“Adapting to the digital age is difficult in any industry. It’s risky, it’s scary and it’s easy to sit back and watch the other guys try it first. But today, three incentives have emerged which should make it easier for hoteliers to embrace digital; this new study shows how the right mobile technology could save dollars, make dollars, and improve guest loyalty” Professor Ian Millar, Head of Information Technology at EHL (Ecole Hotelière de Lausanne, named the world’s top hotel management school in 2013.)HITEC 2015 is underway with a bang, and the first day brings with it a new YouGov study showing how most Americans now want mobile tech inside their hotels – and it seems many are prepared to pay extra for the privilege. Read More »

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