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by Matt Alderton | November 03, 2014
Business travelers' smartphones are about to get a lot smarter, according to Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, which today announced the release of SPG Keyless, the hospitality industry's first mobile, keyless entry system allowing hotel guests to use their smartphone as a room key.

Available exclusively to members of the Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG) loyalty program, SPG Keyless will serve 30,000 rooms at 150 Aloft, Element, and W brand hotels by early 2015. As of today, it's available at the following 10 properties: Aloft Beijing, Aloft Cancun, Aloft Cupertino, Aloft Harlem, W Doha, W Hollywood, W Hong Kong, W New York-Downtown, W Singapore, and Element Times Square.

Here's how it works: SPG members register their phone through the SPG app. After booking a reservation at a keyless hotel, and approximately 24 hours before arrival, guests are invited to opt-in to SPG Keyless, at which point they will receive a text message indicating that they are checked in. When the guest's room is ready, the app will be updated with a room number and a Bluetooth key. Upon arrival, guests will be able to bypass the front desk and go directly to their room, "unlocking" their stay with their Bluetooth-enabled smartphone.

"Not only does SPG Keyless alleviate a perennial pain point for travelers, but it also transforms the first interaction with our guests from one that is transactional to something more personal," Starwood President and CEO Frits van Paasschen said in a statement. "This is just the beginning, because through mobile we have the opportunity to marry high tech and high touch to transform the hotel experience in many exciting ways."

Head here for more information about SPG Keyless.