OpenWays Gives Hope for NFC Hotel Keys

Imagine you’re at a hotel, and you’re completely trashed. Your wallets gone missing (they’re probably in the same place as your pants) and the only things in your possession are your cell phone and a stuffed cat you’ve named “Battlestar Galacticat”. Normally you would have to stumble down to the lobby or get some poor embarrassed maid to let you in. However, thanks to the people at OpenWays, your phone may soon be your key.

Currently, OpenWays partners with many hotel companies to provide “acoustic unlocking”. Basically, it uses a prerecorded sound on your phone that unlocks the door. The down side to this is that sounds can be reproduced and re-recorded, allowing strangers access to your room should you lose possession of your phone for a mere minute. However, it looks like OpenWays is teaming with NXP Semiconductors and looking towards the future by merging their current technology with NFC. This will allow for secure NFC access to hotel rooms without the fear of duplication. Here’s a quote from OpenWays on the MWC floor:

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We selected NXP because of its NFC and contactless leadership position as well as its expertise in embedded mobile security. As top hotel chains deploy mobile front desk bypass services, they demand solutions that are truly deployable today while being future proof. As NFC phones continue to appear on the market it was logical to add NFC support to our Mobile Key offering while remaining fully interoperable and ubiquitous,” said Pascal Metivier, founder and CEO of OpenWays. “Having on our side a technology provider with long-standing, end-to-end NFC and security expertize is very important to us. NXP’s position as the co-founder of NFC and potential to collaborate and bring new secure NFC innovations to market with short design in cycles made them the ideal partner.

New innovative services such as OpenWays Mobile Key are exactly what we envisioned as the value add of NFC enabled mobile solutions,” said Henri Ardevol, vice president and general manager, secure transactions, NXP Semiconductors. “We are happy to contribute our expertise across the contactless and security ecosystems as well as our extensive NFC domain knowledge to OpenWays.


We are greatly looking forward to this technology in the future. Not only because someone besides Google is making great use of NFC, but because it makes losing your pants in a strange hotel just a little bit less awkward.]]>

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