The Chinese online business giant Alibaba is behind an incredible hotel concept, with staff made up entirely of robots and some devices with facial recognition, and it will be impossible to pay for anything. whether with cash.
An amazing hotel concept
Alibaba and its iconic CEO Jack Ma have been making a lot of news since the launch of a hotel concept that has not been seen before. The Chinese giant of e-commerce had promised a fully automated establishment, characterized by a lack of human staff, replaced by robots. According to Alibaba, this type of hotel where even cash has no place represents the future of the hotel business.
In an article published on October 3, 2019, the CNBC channel reported on the reality on the ground and the promises made by Alibaba (see end of article). Called FlyZoo, the hotel is located in Hangzhou, south of Shanghai. At the entrance, the lack of reception and reception is striking. Note the presence of terminals allowing customers to identify themselves via a dedicated smartphone application. However, this only concerns locals as foreign clients will have to register their identity papers.
A concentrate of technology
Most striking seems to be the unlocking of the rooms using a facial recognition device. In addition, a virtual assistant named Tmall Genie greets the customer once inside. However, the assistant is able to perform certain tasks on request. It may be to turn on the television, open or close the curtains and change the lighting of places. Some product orders can be made and delivery will be handled by a robot.
In the corridors, the omnipresence of distributors of all kinds is surprising. And yet, there is no question of paying with coins! Indeed, it is necessary to have the application Alipay, an Internet payment solution created in 2004 by Alibaba. This point is not surprising because, in China, more than 65% of transactions are already made via alternatives to cash.
A concept for sale
With its FlyZoo hotel, Alibaba is therefore trying to revolutionize the hotel industry by making a complete change in standard practices. The Chinese giant, however, sees further because this first hotel seems to be a mere showcase. Indeed, the concept is for sale and Alibaba targets large existing hotel chains. For example, the American group Marriott International specializing in luxury hotels would have been very interested.