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The Changing Internet


Software-as-a-service (SaaS)
It is a delivery model for software in which one pays for software on a pay-per-use basis instead of buying the
software outright, using a personal application service provider. An application service provider (ASP) supplies
software applications (and often related services such as maintenance, technical support, information storage,
and the like) over the Internet that would otherwise reside on customer’s computers.
For example, a person might be in an airport and needs to build a workbook with a PDA (Personal Digital
Assistant), which may not have a complete version of Excel. So, he will use PDA to connect to the Internet and
a personal ASP. With the PDA, he will then use the personal ASP’s Excel software to create his workbook and
save it on the ASP’s Web server. When the user finally got back to the office, he would use the computer there,
connect to the same ASP, and retrieve his workbook and save it on the computer.
F2b2C
In the e-commerce world, business models are identified by the players such as B2B (Business-to-Business)
and G2C (Government-to-Consumer). Introducing a third player creates an entirely new e-commerce business
model. The first of these new business models to surface is F2b2C (Factory-to-business-to-Consumer), an e-
commerce business model in which a consumer communicates through a business on the Internet and directly
provides product specifications to a factory that makes the customized and personalized product to the
consumer’s specifications then ships it directly to the consumer (Haag, 2010).
In this model, the business is simply an Internet intermediary that provides a communication channel between
the factory and the consumer. When this happens, a form of disintermediation occurs. Disintermediation is
the use of Internet as a delivery vehicle, whereby intermediate players in a distribution channel can be
bypassed. The travel agents has been disintermediated by the Internet, by directly connecting the customers
to an airline to purchase tickets.
Voice Over Internet Protocol (VOIP)
VOIP allows users to send voice communications over the Internet and avoid the toll charges that they would
normally receive from their long distance carrier. VOIP allows users to access Internet connection (broadband
such as Digital Subscriber Line [DSL] or cable) to make phone calls.
Web 2.0
It refers to the so-called second generation of the web that focuses on online collaboration where users are
both creators and modifiers of content, with dynamic and customized fees, and with other engaging web-
based services.
Web 2.0 Applications
• Wiki – a website that allows you – as a visitor – to create, edit, change, and often eliminate content.
Wikis are actually an interesting implementation of sourcing, called crowdsourcing. It occurs when
businesses provide enabling technologies that allow people instead of a designated paid employee –
to create, modify, and oversee the development of a product or service.
• Social Networking Site – a site on which users post information about themselves, create a network
of friends, share content such as photos and videos, and communicate with other people
• Blog – a website in the form of a journal in which you post entries in chronological order and often
includes the capabilities of other viewers to add comments to journal entries
• RSS (Rich Site Summary) feed – a technology that provides frequently published and updated digital
content on the Web

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• Podcasting – refers to user’s ability at any time to download audio and video files for viewing and
listening using portable devices and computers
Physiological Interaction with Technology
Physiological interfaces capture and utilize one’s body characteristics, such as breath, voice, height, weight,
and even the iris of your eye. Physiological innovations include the following:
o Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR)
ASR system not only captures spoken words but also distinguishes word groupings to form sentences.
Steps in an ASR System
1. Feature analysis – The system captures your words as you speak into a microphone, eliminate any
background noise, and converts the digital signals of your speech into phonemes (syllables).
2. Pattern classification – The system matches your spoken phonemes to a phoneme sequence stored in
an acoustic model database.
3. Language processing – The system attempts to make sense of what you’re saying by comparing the
word phonemes generated in step 2 with a language model database.
American Airlines (US Airways) reached new heights in customer service with a fast, personalized self-service
IVR (interactive voice responses) system powered by Nuance. 2VoiceXML, a technology that powers speech
recognition for phone and web applications are used by travelers to have access even if they don’t have typical
devices such as a laptop or tablet. Customers can now access hotel booking services even in their car as
Chevrolet partners with Priceline making use of VoiceXML and ASR system
o Virtual Reality (VR)
It is a three-dimensional computer simulation in which users can actively and physically participate. In a virtual
reality system, one makes use of special input and output devices that capture your physiological movements
and send physiological responses back to you.
VR devices
• Glove – an input device that captures and records the shape and movement of your hand and fingers
and the strength of your hand and finger movements
• Headset (head-mounted display) – a combined input and output device that (1) captures and records
the movement of your head and (2) contains a screen that covers your entire field of vision and
displays various views of an environment based on your movements
• Walker – an input device that captures and records the movement of your feet as you walk or turn in
different directions
4Marriott is experimenting with VR by test-driving in select locations what the hotel chain calls “VRoom
Service,” where guests can order headsets to watch “VR Postcards” with preloaded VR experiences made to
inspire travel, according to eHotelier. Marriott has also marketed this technology by setting up ‘Teleporters’,
science-fiction-inspired phone booths, which take consumers to a Marriott Greatroom lobby and then to
amazing locales, as part of its ‘Travel Brilliantly’ campaign.
o Cave Automatic Virtual Environments (CAVE)
It is a special 3-D virtual reality room that can display images of other people and objects located in other
CAVEs all over the world. CAVEs are holographic devices that create, capture, and/or display images in true
three-dimensional form.

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o Haptic Interfaces
Haptic interface uses technology to add the sense of touch to an environment that previously only had visual
and textual elements. Applications that incorporate the use of gloves and walkers use implementations of
haptic interfaces. Arcade games also use haptic interfaces.
o Biometrics
It refers to the use of physiological characteristics – such as one’s fingerprints, the blood vessels in the iris of
the eye, the sound of one’s voice – to provide identification. Real-world applications in place today includes
custom shoes, custom wedding gowns, and custom bathrobes making use of biometrics.
3Many airports now are using iris recognitions systems instead of magnetic card swipes to control staff access
to airport grounds. Fingerprint recognition can also be used as a replacement for magnetic cards in controlling
access to guest rooms. Similarly, some hospitality system vendors have incorporated similar technology into
the back-of-house time attendance systems to help prevent buddy punching and other time fraud.
Other Biometric Devices
 Biochip – a technology chip that can perform a variety of physiological functions when inserted
into the human body. Biochips have been proven in some cases to block pain for people who suffer
severe spinal injuries, help paralyzed people regain some portion of their motor skills, and help
partially blind people see well.
 Implant chip – a technology-enabled microchip implanted into the human body that stores
important information about yourself (such as identification and medical history) and that may be
GPS (Global Positioning System)-enabled to offer a method of tracking
 Facial recognition software – software that provides identification by evaluating facial
characteristics.
The above examples are some of the technological advancements currently being introduced and utilized to
revolutionize the betterment of businesses and society as a whole. Technology is a necessity today as it also
close the great digital divide (means the world is becoming marked by have’s and have not’s with respect to
technology). Such innovations give way also to personalization on the part of the service provider.
Personalization is important to improve customer service which then creates long-term and loyal guests.
Physiological innovations enhances interaction with customers and increases the efficiency of self-service
applications we used in tourism and hospitality industry.
Trends and Technologies
o Bluetooth – a standard for transmitting information in the form of short-range radio waves over distances
of up to 30 feet
o Wi-Fi (wireless fidelity) – a standard for transmitting information in the form of radio waves over distances
up to about several miles
o RFID (radio frequency identification) – uses a microchip in a tag or label to store information, and
information is transmitted from, or written to, the tag or label when the microchip is exposed to the
correct frequency of radio waves

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Current Applications of RFID technology


 Anti-theft car keys – Inside the casing of the car key is an RFID chip. When you insert the key into
the ignition, the RFID chip must communicate with the reader in your ignition system (similar to a
password decoding) for the car to start.
 Library book tracking – Instead of a bar code on which the ISBN (International Standard Book
Number) is stored, the RFID chip contains that information. Books are much easier to check in and
check out, hence making the inventory process faster and more efficient.
 Supply chain – Major participants in the supply chain process is now mandating that the other
participants tag merchandise, trays or boxes of merchandize, and other forms with RFID chips.
These major participants include Walmart, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Target, TESCO
(United Kingdom retailer), and Carrefour (France retailer).
 Passports – Implemented in the United States in 2007, all newly issued U.S. passports now contain
RFID chip in the cover of the passport. The RFID chip contains all the passport holder’s information.
o Nanotechnology – a discipline that seeks to control matter at the atomic and sub-atomic levels for the
purpose of building devices on the same small scale. It is the exact opposite of traditional manufacturing
o Holographic storage device – a device that stores in information on a storage medium that is composed
of 3-D crystal-like objects with many sides or faces
Microsoft Dynamics 365
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It helps intelligent business applications across CRM (customer relationship management) and ERP (enterprise
resource planning) to improve operations. Applications within Microsoft Dynamics 365 work together
seamlessly in the cloud. The following are some of its characteristics:
 Purpose-built – Dynamics 365 get individual apps that work together on their own or together,
allowing users tailor a solution to their needs
 Productive – helps employees work more efficiently. Employees can do CRM tasks in Microsoft
Outlook and ERP tasks in Excel.
 Intelligent – improve your decisions with data using Microsoft Power BI, Cortana Intelligence, and
Azure Machine Learning
 Adaptable – gives users easy-to-use applications that provide a single view of their data and a single
platform for business growth. They all work with Microsoft PowerApps and Microsoft Flow.
• Microsoft Power BI – It is a suite of business analytics tools used to analyze data and share
insights. It monitors business operations and users get answers quickly with rich dashboards
available on every device. It also creates interactive visual reports and provides analysis across
the organization.
• Cortana Intelligence – It is a fully-managed big data and advance analytics suite that transform
data into intelligent action. It harnesses machine learning, intelligence, and the cloud for
predictive healthcare, manufacturing, retail, and financial services.
• Azure Machine Learning – It is a powerful cloud-based analytics that is also a part of Cortana
Intelligence Suite. It is a growing collection of integrated cloud services such as analytics,
computing, database, mobile, networking, storage, and web. Moreover, it protects users’ data
and runs apps anywhere.

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Microsoft Dynamics ERP Solutions


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Microsoft Dynamics 365 offers solutions for sales, customer service, operations, financials, field service,
project service automation, and marketing. The following are specific ERP solutions for business operations:
 Microsoft Dynamics AX (2012 R3) – is the on-premises ERP solution that provides comprehensive and
core functionality the business needs in terms of financials, human resources, and operations
management. It covers the following tasks:
 Warehouse management – automate warehouse processes to reduce operational costs
 Transportation management – get global transportation planning and freight reconciliation
 Budget planning – create easy-to-use budget plan worksheet templates for Microsoft Excel
 Modern point-of-sale (POS) – engage with rich clienteling, real-time inventory lookup, and back-
office capabilities
 Demand forecasting – improve forecasting accuracy to boost product availability and minimize
inventory costs
 Human resources – get complete functionality with payroll analytics, position forecast, reporting,
and benefits updates
 Master data management – increase the consistency of data across the organization and
deployments
 E-commerce and social media – build campaigns and engage the customers through Facebook,
Twitter, and Pinterest.
 Microsoft Dynamics GP – is a complete ERP solution for small and medium-sized businesses. It helps gain
control over the business’ financials, inventory, and operations. It includes the following capabilities:
 Financial management – manage organization’s cash, assets, budgets, and banking with built-in
analytics and account-level security
 Inventory management and operations – track and manage production, inventory, orders,
returns, and vendors
 Sales and service – manage sales, service contracts, and field resources

 Microsoft Dynamics NAV – is an easily adaptable ERP solution that helps small and medium-sized
businesses to automate and connect their sales, purchasing, operations, accounting, and inventory
management. Its system capabilities covers:
 Financial management and accounting – manages organization’s cash, assets, and banking
 Supply chain, manufacturing, and operations – track and manage production, inventory, orders,
and vendors
 Sales and service – manages contacts, sales opportunities, and service contract
 Project management – creates estimates, track projects, and manage capacity
 Business intelligence – gets a holistic view of the business and help make informed decisions
 Support for international currencies – competes globally using multiple currencies and languages
 Flexible development – deploys on-premises or in the cloud, whichever model best fits the
business
Microsoft Solutions for Tourism and Hospitality Industry
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Hospitality and travel organizations are embracing digital transformation to thrive in today’s competitive
environment. Microsoft solutions and its intelligent platform enable hospitality and travel organizations to
combine the best of digital and in-store to deliver personal, seamless, and differentiated guest experiences by
empowering people and capturing insights to drive growth.

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Engaging customers. Microsoft offers solutions to collect and understand customer behaviors and respond
with offers and experiences that are personal, engaging, and relevant. Customers respond best to offers that
are personal and relevant, leading to increased promotional effectiveness, higher conversion, and larger
basket size. Personalization can be delivered through location-aware mobile devices, targeted email
marketing, and personalized online shopping.
Solutions
 Modern point-of-sale and service - Bring “born in the web” technology, like click-stream data and
streaming analytics, onto properties to provide real-time, personalized offers that enable great
shopping experiences and drive quantifiable increases in traffic, conversion, basket size, promotional
effectiveness, customer satisfaction, and profitability
 Personalization - Knowing what products and services the customer will buy enables you to optimize
the supply chain and inventories, and drive customer satisfaction, loyalty, and retention.
 Connected room - The Microsoft Connected Room solution allows the business to meet the specific
needs of guests—from entertainment to environmental preferences—in a streamlined manner. It also
enables insights into the room environment for proactive maintenance, increases revenue per room,
and delivers brand loyalty.
 Multichannel content management - Use a mix of digital channels and methods to proactively listen,
learn, and engage in order to influence purchase behavior and grow customer satisfaction.
Empowering employees. Engage employees with role-optimized solutions that empower them to provide
outstanding service and to collaborate with ease. Providing the right information for all job functions helps
increase employee engagement and allows retailers to deliver differentiated and personalized customer
service.

Solutions
 Employee productivity and collaboration - Empowers management and mobile employees with
anywhere access to operational information around products, customer insights, critical training
information, and schedules.
 Integrated electronic flight bag - Provides collaboration and corporate communications over a highly
secure connection, whether swapping shifts with other pilots, consuming training, or checking and
responding to email.
 Fuel optimization - Accelerates fuel efficiency through data-driven insights. With fuel optimization
solutions, you can quickly make informed decisions and adjust your flight operations as necessary.
Optimizing operations. Improve forecasting and optimize merchandizing and supply chains through an
aggregate understanding of guest and market insights combined with external data. Microsoft provides end-
to-end business processes that optimize cloud scale, industry-leading security, and manageability. These
intelligent solutions enable real-time connections across a wide range of innovative devices uniquely suited to
every need in the guest services environment.
Solutions
 Predictive maintenance - Drives insights to best determine the condition of aircraft in order to predict
when maintenance should be performed or when failure is imminent. This approach promises cost
savings over routine or time-based preventive maintenance because the workforce is engaged only
when attention is required and unexpected service disruption are minimized.

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 Retail management system - Focuses on connecting with customers and empowering employees
across all channels. The Microsoft retail management system solution provides customer engagement
capabilities for property operations, channel management, order management, marketing and care,
and business intelligence, plus back-office capabilities like procurement and financials.
 Intelligent operations - Improve operations by acting on data insights and evolving business practices
to keep pace with rapid change. Accurately predicting demand with machine learning models makes
it possible for you to optimize your airline and hospitality operations.

Transforming products. Manage a pipeline of ideas and align them with strategic priorities to bring new and
innovative products and services to market rapidly and effectively. To succeed in a competitive environment,
hospitality and travel organizations must continually deliver new products and services, improve processes,
and find new ways to deliver value to customers.
Solutions
 Integrated electronic flight bag - Employs a single device for planning, filing, and flying. With modern
electronic flight bag (EFB) applications on a tablet, one can reduce the weight required for paper flight
books onboard.
 Multichannel content management - Microsoft and partner solutions help companies maximize
consumer listening, learning, messaging, and interaction wherever they are—and get smarter based
on continual learnings to anticipate and meet needs.

References
Haag, S. C. (2010). Management information systems for the information age (8th ed.). New York: McGraw-Hill/Irwin.
1www.microsoft.com
2
Lulla, G. (2014). What is the next step for voice recognition technology in hotel bookings? Lifted and modified from
http://www.traveltripper.com/blog/what-is-the-next-step-for-voice-recognition-technology-in-hotel-bookings/ on 12
December 2016.
3
O’Connor, P. (2004). Using Computers in Hospitality (Third Edition). London: Cengage Learning EMEA.
4
Agadoni, L. (2016). Is virtual reality the future of hospitality sector? Lifted and modified from
http://www.jllrealviews.com/industries/virtual-reality-future-hospitality-industry/ on 12 December 2016

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