Every business and industry that exists today relies heavily on consistent communications for its sales, operations, product/service delivery, after sales support functions. Hospitality services are no different and they too, rely on strong, stable and sound communications for cost-effective and efficient operations. Correction. For business continuity. With 83% of American adults using some form of cellular device for communication today, Mobile phones have become a near-ubiquitous tool to seek information and communicate through various mediums and applications.Hotels and Hospitality is an industry that has an immense expectation from its customers about its communications. From seamless booking and reservation systems with 100% uptime, to a reliable in-room Wi-Fi service, to Guest Wi-Fi for the lobby and common areas, to the wireless communications systems to assist the first responders during emergency. The needs for the steady and reliable comms system is an absolute must for Hotels. User expectations aside, the requirement of having an always-up wireless system to assist the first responders, in itself, raises the need for a well-scoped, well-designed, dependable, strong, and reliable in-premise connectivity.
While necessary to combat the weather adversities, the sturdy materials used in the buildings today - the glass, the metal, the concrete - pose a challenge for the wireless signals to pierce through them. Especially the back of house areas, tricky corners, basements, hallways, stairways, store rooms, restrooms, etc. have inadequate wireless connectivity as the signals struggle to pass through walls. This is a serious problem for the emergency responders who rely on the in-building wireless connectivity to save the lives - of those in danger and their own. The last thing they should have to worry about is the signal issues.
The mobile workforce of the hotel industry also rely quite heavily on the wireless connectivity to do their jobs. Who are the mobile workforce? These are the hotel workers who work as bellhops, housekeepers, caterers, and maintenance. These staffs are constantly on the move and should always be reachable. They greatly depend on communications for timely and cost-effective operations. It is imperative to have a neat system to make sure all necessary communications can occur smoothly at all times.
It is apparent that the wireless industry is growing beyond where we ever assumed it would, and there is no shred of doubt that the tech advancement will simply go on and on and on. We have become increasingly dependent on wireless communications as we journeyed to modernization. Smartphones and other gadgets are not only our communication “go to” for making and taking calls, but they are also our “go to” for entertainment, socializing, and for meeting professional demands. As we spend more time indoor than outdoor, an investment in a reliable IBW (In-Building Wireless) services is an imperative for all building owners, public or private, including the Hotels. And DAS (Distributed Antenna Systems) installation should be right up the list of priorities for the building owners and managers today.
While there are more than one solution for IBW connectivity, DAS distributes wireless signals throughout a much larger area than Small Cells can, for example. Its equipment and components are made to create a neutral gateway between wireless subscribers and carriers. Meaning, the system doesn’t single out wireless carriers or frequencies and amazingly caters to all.
DAS installations are known to be active and passive, and most of the installations today use active equipment. Active DAS, in a nutshell, means that the components call for a power source to work. This system makes use of fiber optic cables to connect with remote nodes. On the other hand, passive DAS systems generally work without these fiber optic cables and are made up of simple BDAs (Bi-Directional Amplifier). Passive DAS doesn’t need power, though this type of installations are rare. This would be a viable solution in small offices that may merely need an enhanced cell coverage. However, to address the wireless connectivity requirements for first responders, the public safety DAS with UHF and VHF bands are necessary. There are many specific requirements about Public Safety DAS, and we wrote this blog previously that attempts to cover some key ones.
DAS equipment have built-in alarms in it which when they fail, are triggered to communicate such to the IT dept., or the area that manages this. While traditional DAS are compelled by capacity, the public safety DAS are oriented. It’s due to the likelihood of recurrent or serious emergencies happening at a particular location is remote - however, when they happen, the respondents need ample coverage to be able to respond and communicate effectively. While the resistance in implementing public safety DAS is somewhat understandable - something so expensive to install but is so rarely used - but the tragedies back in September 11, 2001 proved the importance of maintaining reliable public safety coverage. Hotels are one of those premises that is often very highly occupied, and if the proverbial was to hit the fan, the impact would be high - further highlighting its significance. Is your hotel premise completely lit? Does it comply with all the public safety standards and requirements?