Vancouver B.C. hotel dumps old landlines for iPhones

OPUS Vancouver has added iPhones to its rooms, complementing the iPads that are already available.

OPUS Vancouver became the first hotel in Canada earlier this year to put an iPad in every room. Now, the hip hotel in Vancouver, B.C.’s Yaletown neighborhood is going one step further. The hotel has ditched those old-fashioned things that used to be hooked to the wall, replacing them with iPhones.

“Technology is a way of life today, not just a perk, and that holds true even while traveling. For the first time ever, guests can take their hotel phone off property, stay connected to the Internet, and receive and make phone calls,” General Manager Nicholas Gandossi said in a press release.

Each iPhone comes equipped with a programmed set of numbers so that guests can easily contact key numbers at the hotel. Even better, all incoming and local calls are complimentary, meaning that travelers from the U.S. and other international locales don’t have to worry about hefty roaming fees.

What about privacy? After all, you can get in almost as much trouble in Vancouver, B.C. as Vegas. According to the hotel, the phones are “wiped clean by an application to ensure privacy and security.”

Sounds great, but I bet more than one guest will “inadvertently” walk out the door with their loaned iPhone, making asset tracking a possible headache. Nonetheless, it will be interesting to see if other hotels follow suit.

  • TommyPutThePhoneDown!!

    Sorry, but this is just a stupid gimmick.

    Everyone already has a phone. Why do I want to carry another one around?

    And given how rarely I use the phone in a hotel room, I’d rather have a nice big handset permanently mounted in a predictable location than to to locate a black iPhone in a room that’s not well lit (‘cos hotel room lighting typically sucks).

    Then there’s the accidental loss and breakage risks: I don’t want to be responsible for replacing a $300 room phone. And you can tell no one that came up with this idea has kids, ‘cos putting a phone like that in the room with a kid is a recipe for disaster.

    If they wanted to do something useful rather than gimmicky, they’d develop their own app that you can download that gives you all the numbers you need on YOUR phone.

    • guest

      Yeah, it’s not like this “gimmick” got them any free advertising or anything…

  • Rillette

    Attention hotels of the world: Just get rid of the phones entirely and let me use my mobile. Nobody is paying you $9 a minute to make a phone call from your room.

  • benjitek

    Regardless of whether the phone is wiped upon checkout, incoming and outgoing calls, internet activity, and text messages are placed through the hotel’s service. That information will linger somewhere long after the iPhone has been reset. The same would be true when using your own personal device, however, then it would be accessible to just the carrier, and not hotel staff. For many, this isn’t a concern — for some, it will be. Regardless, customers should know where a record of their activity exists, how long it will be stored, and who has access to it.