Indoor LTE: Will this Impact Me and When?
By David Heckaman Vice President of Technology Development, Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group | April 29, 2012
As your reading this article Apple will have just released their 3rd generation of iPad device. This device will sold for the first time with an option for mobile wireless utilizing 4G LTE service from the major North American cellular providers.
The reason that this iPad release is important is that it will unleash a new wave of devices that may dramatically impact your ability to deliver the same level of service that the guest receives outside your building within the walls of your hotel.
For the early years of "the Internet" hotels delivered just minimal bandwidth to the guestroom. This usually was just enough to be able to check the box that says "High-Speed Internet" and allow them to compete in their individual market. However by late 2007 it was becoming apparent that the bare minimum was no longer acceptable.
As Apple and others opened the floodgates of functional smartphones onto the market the hoteliers needed to focus more attention to allowing guest devices, not just laptops, to function while within the walls of their hotels.
Personal History Lesson
In 2001, I started working for Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group working on developing and opening of the group's North American flagship property in New York City. This property is located in the North tower of the Time Warner Center. The hotel encompasses back of house facilities in sub-floor levels while the sky lobby and hotel start on the 35th floor and raises almost twenty more floors above Central Park.