By Robert Holland, Chief Technology Adviser to the BHA
I still have this romantic memory of waiting for the next instalment of my favourite comic when I was young. In fact, I still like to see the enjoyment that my six-year-old has when he gets the latest edition of Whizz Pop Bang. But I think that today, we are increasingly likely to pick up our news online. Alongside reading my emails on my smartphone, I check in on the news frequently during the day.
I am also aware of the operational issues of distributing print materials within a hotel. Often our guests do not check in until late so we do not know which newspaper they prefer to read until it is too late to order the right one. Because of this, we pre-purchase a few different ones which sit unread and then form most of our recycling at the end of the day. Magazines adorning our coffee tables are a recognised standard in most hotels but these become dog eared and out of date quickly when used or sit there forlorn if they are not.
So, the innovative MediaPad system from Gold Key Media not only provides a wide range of global newspapers and magazines such as The FT, The Times, Frankfurter Allgemeine, Corriera Della Sera, New York Times, Conde Nast Traveller, GQ etc. but also includes a fully interactive guest entertainment platform including a wide range of games, puzzles, audio books and eBooks that are particularly popular amongst younger guests.
Guests can filter the wide selection of titles by language as well as genre and can also search within a publication for articles on a topic or area of interest.
Hotels can fully customise the system to promote key areas of their property such as Spa’s, restaurants and sister properties with direct links to other collateral including menus and special offers.
Chris Horn, Managing Director of Gold Key Media, said, “We pride ourselves on the fantastic publications we’re able to offer and by adding games and books we are catering for a wider audience. What sets us apart from other platforms in the market is the quality of the content provided, we have focused very much on securing the very best publications for the platform rather than vast quantities of irrelevant titles. Additionally, allowing hotels to design and personalise their media platform allows them to promote their own offering to guests”
With so many publications already available online, I believe that the big publishing houses are already addressing the growing shift away from printed materials and so I believe should we.