Hotels: HDTVs without HDTV
This would seem like a small mistake if it wasn't so prevalent. Hotels across the nation are upgrading to flat-panel HDTVs, tossing out those bulky CRT sets and slapping either LCD or plasma sets on the walls. Should look great, right?
Seems like most hotel chains haven't gotten the big picture. They have HDTVs, but no HD service. Oops.
What's worse than that? Most hotels have programmed these sets to stretch the standard-def image to fit the HDTVs widescreens, resulting in pictures that look worse than they would have on the old set.
If you thought it was expensive to upgrade your home, an article in The New York Times reports that upgrading hotel hardware, cabling, channel-switching, and the in-hotel services guides could cost as much as $100,000 per property. Ouch.
Hyatt hotels have no plans for HDTV at the moment. A representative for the Ritz-Carlton Hotels said they get more bang for their bucks with in-room coffee and fancy shower headss.
We're all doomed to fuzzy, stretchy images, and a really good cup of joe. -Leslie Shapiro