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Holiday Inn to Test Smartphones as Room-Keys

If you're anything like me, the room-key goblins come and steal one or both of those little cards the second you arrive, planting them in weird places for you to find when you get home. Well, it looks like those once-a-day trips to the front desk could soon come to an end. If an experiment by the Holiday Inn spreads to other hotels, we may find ourselves living in a world where all you need to open your door is your mobile phone.

Two Holiday Inn locations will launch a 60-day trial that will see customers ditch the room keys and just use a smartphone application instead. Not only will the application remove the need to always know where that pesky room-key is, but it also enables you to check in without ever going near the front desk.

Holiday Inn Chicago O'Hare Rosemont and the Holiday Inn Express Houston Downtown Convention Center will next month launch the trial that will utilize technology that, according to the Telegraph, is compatible with Android devices, BlackBerrys and iPhones. USA Today says the trial will last between 60 and 90 days but could last longer.

The technology is said to be quite expensive to implement so if it does get rolled out on a more widespread basis, it is said that only 20 percent of hotels will be equipped for smartphone check-ins.