Digital keys are supposed to make things easier, and for many people that is indeed the case. But widespread support isn’t quite there yet. That’s changing today, though, as one of the largest hotel chains out there is adopting the useful function.
Today, Hyatt is announcing that it is adopting support for digital room keys that can be stored in the Apple Wallet app available on iPhone. With iOS 15, Apple made it possible to store digital keys in the Wallet app, and Hyatt is one of the first large-scale partners to adopt support.
What’s more, it’s available beginning today at select hotels owned by the company. There are six hotels that will offer support right out of the gate, those located in “Andaz Maui at Wailea Resort, Hyatt Centric Key West Resort & Spa, Hyatt House Chicago/West Loop-Fulton Market, Hyatt House Dallas/Richardson, Hyatt Place Fremont/Silicon Valley and Hyatt Regency Long Beach.”
With this support, iPhone owners will be able to quickly and easily add their digital room key to the Wallet app. From there, they will be able to unlock their room with that key. What’s more, with support also available in watchOS 8, these hotel guests will also be able to unlock their room from the Apple Watch.
The digital keys unlock rooms, yes, but they will also grant access to certain areas in the hotel as well, including the pool, gym, and even elevators. From today’s announcement:
Like everything we do at Hyatt, our approach to technology always includes listening to our guests and members. We heard that they want access to be near-instantaneous. Room keys in Apple Wallet is an easy, convenient and secure room key option for our guests when they travel,’ said Julia Vander Ploeg, Senior Vice President and Global Head of Digital and Technology, Hyatt. ‘We are proud to work with Apple to launch this game-changing digital experience. Many consumer technologies evolve through a ‘tipping point’ that drives a change in adoption. We believe our collaboration with Apple on this new approach to room keys in Apple Wallet can be exactly that.
And the major bullet points:
- Seamless Set-up and Check-In: From the World of Hyatt app, members can add their room key to Apple Wallet after completing a reservation. Once added, the room key in Apple Wallet will be updated to let them know when it’s time for check-in. Once a guest is checked in and the room is ready, the room key in Apple Wallet will be activated, will note the guest’s room number and can be used immediately. The room key will not activate until the guest is checked into the hotel and a guestroom has been assigned.
- Safe, Easy and Contactless Experience: If a World of Hyatt guest needs to change rooms, extend a stay or access late checkout, the hotel can update the guest’s room key in Apple Wallet remotely – bypassing the need to visit the front desk. When it’s time to check out, guests can simply do so through the World of Hyatt app. The guest’s room key in Apple Wallet will then be remotely deactivated and archived in Apple Wallet.
- Simply Tap iPhone or Apple Watch to Unlock: Room keys in Apple Wallet give World of Hyatt guests easy and secure access to their room and common areas around the hotel such as the gym, spa, pool and more, with a simple tap of their iPhone running iOS 15 or Apple Watch running watchOS 8. Once a room key is added to Apple Wallet on iPhone or Apple Watch, guests can hold their device near the door’s NFC-enabled lock to access key card-protected areas. With Express Mode, guests don’t need to unlock their device to use their room key in Apple Wallet. If their iPhone needs to be charged, they can still use the device to unlock their room or common areas for up to five hours with automatic Power Reserve.
- More Secure and Private: Room keys in Apple Wallet are stored on your device and take full advantage of the privacy and security built into iPhone and Apple Watch. When or where a World of Hyatt guest uses a room key in Apple Wallet is never shared with Apple or stored on Apple servers. If an iPhone or Apple Watch is misplaced, the guest can promptly use the Find My app to lock the device and help locate it.
It’s a small rollout to start. Hyatt says it expects to go global in the near future, but no set date just yet.