By Janice Hoppe-Spiers, Senior Editor at Knighthouse Media
Tom Pullen founded PureHD nine years ago with a vision to become the leader in the high-definition free-to-guest television market for the hospitality industry. Over the years, the company has built a solid reputation for delivering first-class service and having the industry expertise to install it right the first time.
“The vision was to build a company that was all digital,” Pullen adds. “The trouble was, a lot of the vendors in our industry have a lot of legacy systems that are analog, which created a complex support and operations model. As the first company in the digital age, the way we built the company, support, technology, and operations are all different than what our predecessors have done.
“We have very low customer turnover because we focus on the service side of things,” Pullen says. “Every single customer is a reference. When I started this company, I wanted to be different than the incumbents who didn’t do a good job of listening to the customer.”
PureHD considers itself a technology leader in the digital television space. We have been watching the convergence of streaming video and broadcast television, but until just recently, there was no technology that enabled any hotel to provide their guests a seamless integration of their personal content, on-demand content, and hotel linear television. DISH, in consultation with PureHD, identified a need in the market and created EVOLVE to meet that demand.
Eighteen months ago, PureHD delivered the first EVOLVE platform installation. Hotelier response has been positive with extensive installations in many major cities.
To meet millennials and the next generation’s demands, the platform had to be 4K-capable, feature Chromecast built-in for casting content from apps like YouTube, Hulu and HBO, offer free-to-guest interactive television and feature parental controls. DISH’s EVOLVE is also Google certified, allowing customers to access thousands of apps from the Google Play Store.
“If a hotel wants me to do something special like integrate their rewards program, dining options or spa/golf reservations into the EVOLVE platform, the answer is, ‘There’s an app for that,’” Pullen explains. “Because EVOLVE is Google certified, every time a developer updates their app, Google is performing the update certification, allowing PureHD to focus on customer specific apps.
“DISH’s EVOLVE is being called a game-changer in the hospitality industry, which is three years ahead of everyone else,” Pullen says. “We’ve contracted with over 100 hotels for EVOLVE to date, and that number is rapidly growing. Our partnership with DISH allows PureHD to add an interactive offering to our existing client base.”
Industry response to DISH’s EVOLVE has been extremely positive. “Everyone says the platform is lightning fast – fast channel change, fast navigation, fast search and it’s just all around fast,” Pullen says. “It is 50 percent faster than any other interactive platform in the marketplace. EVOLVE is a well-baked solution deep into the commercial rollout. Both PureHD and DISH continue to develop additional exciting features.”
PureHD’s key development focuses are around hotel compendium, simplified Chrome casting, and leveraging Google Assistant to engage voice controls in the guest room.
Google Assistant is embedded in EVOLVE, allowing guests to walk into the room and turn on the television, as well as control the thermostat and drapes through different apps. “EVOLVE can become the hub or the brain of the room using Google apps,” Pullen explains. “This interactive product is designed for hotels that are trying to differentiate themselves through guest experience and technology.”
PureHD will be displaying DISH’s EVOLVE at Booth #2531 during HITEC this June in Houston. “The EVOLVE set-back box is the top 4K-enabled solution in the market, making it the perfect next generation platform for hospitality entertainment,” Pullen says.
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