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Apple Co-Founder Steve Wozniak Gives Impromptu Product Demo During Stay at W Hotel

It's an evolution of their keyless entry system -- using smartphones.

Screen grab by Re/code

Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak gave an impromptu product demo on a recent visit to the W Hollywood Hotel.

Woz’s stay at the hotel coincided with the rollout of Starwood Hotels & Resorts’ new keyless entry system, which allows guests to use their smartphones as room keys.

The camera-ready Woz, who has appeared on the reality show “Kathy Griffin: My Life on the D-List” and done a turn on ABC’s prime-time competition “Dancing With the Stars,” agreed to appear on camera to offer an on-the-spot demo of the technology. His wife, Janet, even makes a cameo appearance.

Wozniak slips comfortably into demo mode, holding his iPhone so it is visible to the camera as he walks the viewer through the process — first launching the SPG app, then touching his iPhone to the door lock and waiting (for long seconds) until the green light on the lock flashes the okay. With a click of the latch, he enters the hotel room — then abruptly turns to the camera and flashes a broad smile.

“And I didn’t have to talk to anybody to do this,” Wozniak proclaims, holding the smartphone to the camera.

Starwood launched SPG Keyless last month.

After booking a reservation at a participating hotel — at the moment there are only 10 — members of the Starwood Preferred Guest loyalty program are invited to download the app and register their smartphones for the keyless entry program. About 24 hours before arrival, each guest will receive his or her room number and a Bluetooth key.

Once at the hotel, the guest can bypass the check-in process and go directly to his or her room, except in regions that require an ID check at the front desk.

The Bluetooth technology is an evolution of Starwood’s smart check-in, which used a key card equipped with RFID. Eventually, a spokesperson said, guests should be able to use the app to indicate preferences (high floor, not near elevator, hypoallergenic pillows) or request services (housekeeping, room service).

You can see Wozniak’s demo here:

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