Starwood Hotels is preparing to launch a version of its SPG app for Google Glass, which, per the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB), is one of the first of its kind for the device.
Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide will soon release its Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG) app for Google Glass, calling it "the first of its kind from a hospitality company."
The SPG app enables guests to find nearby hotels and book rooms by preference, as well as to connect to a hotel's services, pull up maps, and access customer support, among other features.
According to Starwood, the SPG app for Google Glass will take advantage of the platform's voice command and geolocation features and allow users to voice search its more than 1,150 hotels. The app will also provide turn-by-turn directions to any hotel; allow users to explore photos of amenities, rooms, or local areas; and it will use state aware technology to display upcoming stay details, recognize arrivals, and customize experiences.
Starwood says its goal with Glass and other wearable technologies is "to explore what kinds of new features and services are possible and to learn from guests' experiences."
Per the SPG for Glass website, the app is in beta and will be updated based on member feedback.
A Starwood rep was not available for comment by deadline.
However, according to Joe Laszlo, senior director of the Mobile Marketing Center of Excellence at the IAB, it's "definitely really, really early days for anybody to develop apps for Google Glass with a kind of serious commercial perspective to them" because "the audience isn't large enough [yet for it] to be an appealing platform."
And while Laszlo says it's also too early for there to be best practices for Google Glass app development, he does suggest that works around it could lead to some benefits. App developers have to take into consideration different devices, which, if mobile fragmentation continues, could lead to some flexibility in the system that will make it easier to redevelop an app for user interfaces.
In the future, he says, Google Glass app developers will likely have to keep things even simpler than they do for phone screens, noting that beneficial features in a Google Glass app might include taps on the side of the device instead of touches.
Laszlo also says this is an interesting moment to be developing apps for Google Glass and the wearables market, which will only grow over time.
Acknowledging this is the first app in the works for Google Glass that he has heard about, Laszlo also recalls Starwood was the first hotel chain to build a hotel in the virtual world Second Life in the early 2000s.
"I think it's cool Starwood is experimenting. That's good for the brand. Lots of young, techy, innovative people pay attention," Laszlo says. "I think that's positive and you never know which will take off and become a mass phenomenon. Second Life didn't, but if you're willing to experiment, it does good things and one thing will pay off someday."
On the heels of a fantastic event in New York City, ClickZ Live is taking the fun and learning to Toronto, June 23-25. With over 15 years' experience delivering industry-leading events, ClickZ Live offers an action-packed, educationally-focused agenda covering all aspects of digital marketing. Register today!
Want to learn more? Join us at ClickZ Live San Francisco, Aug 10-12!
Educating marketers for over 15 years, ClickZ Live brings together industry thought leaders from the largest brands and agencies to deliver the most advanced, educational digital marketing agenda. Register today and save $500!
In addition to ClickZ and Search Engine Watch, Lisa's work has appeared in The Huffington Post, The Luxury Spot, LearnVest, MarthaStewart.com, GoodHousekeeping.com, amNewYork, and The Wall Street Journal. She's a graduate of Columbia's School of Journalism.
Gartner Magic Quadrant for Digital Commerce
This Magic Quadrant examines leading digital commerce platforms that enable organizations to build digital commerce sites. These commerce platforms facilitate purchasing transactions over the Web, and support the creation and continuing development of an online relationship with a consumer.
Paid Search in the Mobile Era
Google reports that paid search ads are currently driving 40+ million calls per month. Cost per click is increasing, paid search budgets are growing, and mobile continues to dominate. It's time to revamp old search strategies, reimagine stale best practices, and add new layers data to your analytics.
June 10, 2015
12:00pm ET/9:00am PT