Augemented Reality (AR) has recently gained in relevance and media attention in particular with the introduction of Google Glass in April 2013. AR describes the extension of reality with help of computer-generated content. With technical devices like smartphones an extension of the physical world with virtual information can be created. This technology can be of great benefit, because it provides additional information that is not available in reality. This way information concerning the current location or places nearby can be provided with AR. Furthermore, digital pictures can be created that blend into reality. Technical devices with software for AR can put historical buildings back to their original location, like for instance the Berlin Wall at the Brandenburg Gate.
For the hotel and travel industry AR offers a range of opportunities, in particular with regard to content for travel guides or location information, Augmented Reality is a useful and innovative technology. The self-proclaimed world’s first “augmented reality hotel”, Hotel Inn used AR in 2012. With the Olympics in London, Hotel Inn used the new technology to bring digital versions of Britain’s athletes into rooms of the hotel.
AR can be both an informative and entertaining tool for guests and the hotels. The technology can be used for different purposes and allows for very creative integration into the hotel. Moreover, it adds value and is still a rare technology in hotels, so this is a great opportunity to take the lead and use AR for hotels.