Hotels and airlines have stumbled across the fact that people own iPods, computers, HDTVs and all manners of fancy gadgetry loaded with music, movies and more—and maybe, just maybe, we'd like our lodgings and flights to resemble the rest of life in the 21st century. So now they're racing to catch up to two years ago, installing flat-panel TVs, iPod docks, and on-demand programming.
If you want a hotel room with more, um, modern accommodations, W Hotels will have flat screens and iPod docks by year's end. Marriott is making the same promise, but not until 2009. And for $20 extra a night, at a couple of locations Hilton will set you up with a "Sight and Sound" room that has a 42-inch HDTV, surround sound and on-demand.
The major airline profiled in the article, Delta, is shooting to have its Delta on Demand setup on every flight longer than four hours by next summer, which offers 24 channels of live television, up to 28 films, 12 video games, more than 1,600 songs and 45 hours of HBO programming on a touchscreen in front of you. (Its Song airline sported something similar.)
That's all fabulous, truly. But we carry all of those iPods and PCs for a reason. For one, digital accommodations have been so shitty for so long, by now people expect to BYOE. More importantly, we (usually) want to watch or listen to our own library, which we can easily carry in its entirety by now. So here's the money question: Will these new "luxuries" spur you to pick one hotel or airline over another, or does it even matter anymore? [NYT]