Here’s a First Look at the iPhone’s Convenient Hotel Room Key Feature

iOS 15 and watchOS 8 introduce the ability to add hotel room keys to the Wallet app on iPhone and Apple Watch, allowing you to access your room, elevators, and other locked areas by simply tapping your iPhone or Apple Watch against a card reader. The feature eliminates the need for a traditional plastic room card.

hyatt wallet app hotel room key
Last month, the Hyatt hotel chain became the first to adopt the feature at six U.S. locations, including 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.

KTLA‘s Rich DeMuro recently visited the Long Beach location to test the feature, as seen in a video seen by the blog Appleosophy.

Using the Hyatt app, hotel guests can add their room key to the Wallet app after making a reservation, and they will be notified when check-in time arrives. Once a guest has checked in and the room is ready, the room key in the Wallet app is activated for immediate use and shows the guest’s room number and booking length.

DeMuro tested the feature with Express Mode enabled, which means the iPhone does not need to be unlocked to be used as a hotel room key. The process was quick and hassle-free so he could access his room and elevator in a split second. Express Mode can be disabled for users who prefer an extra layer of security.

Should the ‌iPhone‌ run out of battery, an automatic power reserve function allows the device to be used as a hotel key for up to five hours.

Hotel room keys in the Wallet app are both practical and can provide a contactless experience. If a Hyatt guest needs to change rooms, extend a stay or request a late check-out, the hotel can update the guest’s room key in the Wallet app remotely, eliminating the need for the guest to visit the front desk. When it’s time to check out, guests can do so through the Hyatt app, and the room key is remotely disabled.

Hyatt plans to roll out hotel room keys in the Wallet app globally over time, and other hotel chains are likely to follow suit, but functionality is still limited.


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