Hotel Tonight is bringing its spontaneous room-booking app to the Apple Watch, Business Insider has learned.
The Hotel Tonight app for Apple Watch brings the core functionality of the iPhone app over to your wrist, allowing anyone to quickly browse and book last-minute hotel rooms on the fly.
“What we’ve done is condensed the Hotel Tonight experience into the form factor of the watch,” Hotel Tonight co-founder and CEO Sam Shank told Business Insider. “The idea for the app started a while ago. After the Apple Watch was announced, we had a hackathon the week after, and one of the teams in the hackathon started thinking about how the Hotel Tonight experience would be on the Apple Watch. Once more details were announced, we started building it.”
Shank says the idea was to further reduce the friction of booking a hotel room, allowing people to handle everything from their Watch without needing to take out their phone.
“When you open the app, you can see hotels around you, all the information and details about those hotels, and you can then choose the right hotel for you and then book the hotel in just a few seconds,” Shank said. “It’s very elegant, very simple, very straightforward.”
Like the iPhone version of the app, Hotel Tonight on the Apple Watch will also break things down into three categories — Luxe, Hip, and Standard — allowing you to choose a room that fits your budget.
Here’s what browsing and booking a room on the Apple Watch will look like.
You’ll also be able to quickly view summary information and details on your booking.
“Through the Glances features and other parts of the apps you also have access to your booking information, which is two parts: The booking part of it and the ability for transactions at a moments notice, and then there’s the reference part, which is when you have a booking, you can get directions to the hotel, find out the check-in and check-out times — all the essential information.”
While browsing, booking, directions, and details are all available on Hotel Tonight Apple Watch app, you won’t be able to bypass the check-in desk and unlock your hotel room with your watch, though Shank says it’s something the team has been thinking about.
“We’re definitely interested in looking into that,” he said. “We’ve experimented with that before with Express Check-In, and the watch is a great way to extend that even further.”
But for now, Shank says the focus is on making it easy for people to book a room quickly and in situations where taking out your phone may be awkward, whether you’re in a meeting, a crowded bar, or simply walking with someone down a busy street.
“The mission of Hotel Tonight is to help people embrace spontaneity and serendipity of life, and we thought that this device — by virtue of being very personal and always on you — it would just be a great way to expand what we do and help people be even more spontaneous by reducing the friction of booking a room.”
Hotel Tonight for the Apple Watch will be available when the Apple Watch officially launches on April 24th.
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