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You already choose your seat before you fly, so why not your hotel room before you check in? While other hotel chains and booking sites have toyed with the idea for several years, the concept is now getting a big push from Hilton, which by the end of the year expects to let members of its HHonors loyalty program use their mobile devices to choose their room from a digital floor plan.

As currently configured, the app will allow those guests to preselect their room after 6 a.m. the day before they stay at six Hilton brands. Over the next year, the tool will be expanded to all 11 Hilton brands and also allow guests to use their devices as their room keys. "Travelers can use their smartphones as boarding passes to get to their seats on an airplane, so it is only natural that they will want to use them as a way to enter their hotel rooms," said Christopher J. Nassetta, president and chief executive officer, Hilton Worldwide, in a statement.


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— Rob Lovitt