Facial Biometrics May Be Reaching a Tipping Point in the Hospitality Market: Reports

Hospitality tech solutions provider Oracle Hospitality has announced the findings of new market studies pointing to both opportunities and pitfalls in using biometric technologies in the industry.

Hospitality tech solutions provider Oracle Hospitality has announced the findings of new market studies pointing to both opportunities and pitfalls in using biometric technologies in the industry.The reports, Oracle Hotel 2025 and Oracle Restaurant 2025, are based on surveys of 150 hotel operators, 250 restaurant operators, and 702 consumers conducted in February of this year. They point to growing enthusiasm for facial recognition systems that could be used to identify and even interact with guests, with 72 percent of hotel operators and 33 percent of restaurant operators expecting to deploy such technology in the next five years. Sixty-two percent of hotel guests and 49 percent of restaurant guests said such technology would improve their experience.

That having been said, operators need to be careful about how such systems are used. If the automated systems were to offer restaurant guests suggestions based on health, 42 percent of guests say they would find it offensive, and 68 percent said they would be offended by suggestions based on their ‘digital footprint’. On the other hand, 47 percent of hotel guests said that suggestions based on past purchases would be welcome.

It all points to a new frontier in customer service, with companies like NEC having been shopping around such technology in recent years to hospitality operators that are likely uncertain as to how guests will respond to it. Many are clearly ready to try it out, however, and signs suggest that the market may be ready for it.

March 30, 2017 – by Alex Perala