This month’s roundup of news from the technology sector includes: Marriott bets on tech to combat Airbnb; why hoteliers should invest in technology; and more.
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Dealing with breaches after Equifax
The recent Equifax breach, which company officials did not immediately disclose even though it affected most American adults, has some wondering if it’s time to rewrite the rules on how to respond to and report breaches, according to an op-ed in The Wall Street Journal.
“The Federal Trade Commission and the Federal Bureau of Investigation are investigating, and the first of what’s expected to be a wave of lawsuits by state attorneys general has already been filed,” The Journal writes. “But punishing Equifax isn’t the same as minimizing the impact of similar disasters. For that, we’re going to need something anathema to the tech industry and especially companies that have been hacked: transparency.”
Marriott leaning on tech to push back Airbnb
If the amount of time spent talking about them is a sign, hotel companies seem to be plenty worried about alternative lodging platforms like Airbnb, and Marriott International, the largest hotel company in the world, plans to fight back the encroaching that at least in part by embracing technology, Business Insider reports.
The news outlet writes “Marriott is channeling Silicon Valley startups by rolling out new apps and services that aim to make the guest experience seamless and more personalized, from concierge robots that deliver fresh towels, to a data-driven mobile app that suggests restaurants and activities it thinks guests will enjoy.”
The case for tech investment in hotels
Investing in new technology can sometimes be a risky and unattractive prospect for owners. While it’s reasonable to fear falling victim to a fad discussed as revolutionary technology or the general hurdles inherent with technological obsolesce, experts speaking at the recent Hospitality Technology Next Generation North American Insight Summit in Washington, D.C., said tech investments are key for success.
Farukh Aslam, president of Sinclair Holdings, said spending on tech is part of his company’s recipe for success.
When it comes to tech improvements “a lot of you are thinking ‘how much does this cost,’” he said. “But as a developer, it’s my money being spent, and I can say it’s a lower-cost deployment. I’m spending less on CapEx and about 35% to 40% lower in (operating expenses).”
Online shopping now part of Hilton loyalty platform
Hilton and Amazon have announced a new partnership which allows Hilton Honors members to shop on the online retailer using loyalty points, according to Tech Crunch. The new program assigns a value of $1 to 500 points.
The tech news website notes that this is the first such arrangement between Amazon and a loyalty program, but they “understand that it will be the first of several to come.”
Compiled by Sean McCracken.