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Local Company Makes New Hotel App

February 22, 2012, 9:50 PM by Angela Kennecke

Local Company Makes New Hotel App
SIOUX FALLS, SD - Are you a germophobe who doesn't want to use the remote control in your hotel room? There's an app for that.

A Sioux Falls company has a new app for turning your smart device into a remote control. But, hotel guests will find that the app offers much more.

Whether you want to avoid using the remote control in your hotel room, or you just like cool new apps, LodgeNet's new mobile app will transform the way you watch TV when you travel.

"The core technology is that it turns your iPad into a remote control for the room; so you can turn on the TV, change volume, look at the movies we have on the property; you can look at trailers and buy a movie from your iPhone or iPad," Scott Petersen of LodgeNet Interactive said.

You can download the app online, or in the hotel lobby or after you check in using a QR code. You enter the code from your TV and it become your remote; but it's also much more than that.

"One is the TV control part for the remote control, but then there's a separate section for the hotel, so this hotel can have it's own information on the app-we call that an app within an app--and then we have another section that talks about local information; so you can see what is happening in the city," Petersen said.

LodgeNet says it won't be long before you'll be able to buy tickets, make restaurant reservation or order room service with the app.

"And you don't have to be in the hotel to do it. Once you've registered at the hotel in the room, you could be coming back from the event, and you wanted a pizza and it was getting late, you could order pizza on the way back and it would be ready for you when you got to the property," Petersen said.

It can even be used for checking out. Hotels say it will help them better service their guests and get them to come back by offering specials.

"Because of our location next to the mall, we're going to be able to promote our Christmas shopping package and things like that. We'll probably start doing that this summer and fall," David Eisenbraun, General Manager of the Marriot Hotel said.

Lodgenet also plans to offer consumers deals and discounts through the app for its movies.

"We hope to create a tighter relationship with the consumer in the room. Historically people buy things through TV in the room; we never knew who they were. Now we can create relationships with that customer because they are downloading your app," Petersen said.

The app is currently available in about a third of the 1.7 million hotel rooms with LodgeNet service and the company hopes to have it in one million rooms by the end of the year.

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