UPDATE: Today we heard from some of the people behind this project and they let us know the system has been installed in about 10,000 hotel rooms so far. These hotels range from “small select service properties all the way up to very large 2,000 room full service properties as well some very high end Luxury properties.” They also stated that they are working with more hotels to expand the server.
The Original Story:
In a move to be friendlier to cord cutters, Marriott Hotels has started adding Netflix, Hulu Plus, Crackle, and YouTube to their TVs. You need to use your personal Netflix or Hulu Plus account to use the service, and it is a great option for cord cutters and anyone else with those services.
Currently, the service is only available in their high-end brands like the JW. Over the next few years, you can expect to see the new Netflix-enabled TVs to slowly make their way to the lower-end Marriott properties.
Recently, we were able to test the service and were surprised that in a massive hotel Netflix played smoothly—without glitches. The Netflix and Hulu Plus apps are the most recent versions you would find on new smart TVs or streaming boxes, such as the Roku 3 and Fire TV.
If you are concerned that the next guest will go and mess up your profiles on Netflix have no fear. The TVs will automatically log you out when you check out or you can manually remove your info from the TV before you leave.
As a cord cutter, I have taken to traveling with a Fire TV now that they allow you to log into a hotel wi-fi network. Having built-in Netflix will save my family from bringing our Fire TV with us when we travel.
Hopefully other hotels will add this service and, over the next five years, Netflix will become a standard option in most major hotel chains.