RFID Bracelets a Game Changer for Disney
Imagine Walt Disney World with no entry turnstiles. Cash? Passé: Visitors would wear rubber bracelets encoded with credit card information, snapping up corn dogs and Mickey Mouse ears with a tap of the wrist. Smartphone alerts would signal when it is time to ride Space Mountain without standing in line.
Fantasyland? Hardly. It happens starting this spring.
MagicBand Bracelet is RFID Bracelet
In what is being hailed as a game-changing technology for the theme park industry, the Walt Disney Co. last week announced a new MagicBand bracelet that will enable guests at Walt Disney World to enter the parks, purchase food and merchandise, unlock their hotel rooms and access certain rides with a wave of their wrists.
The MagicBand bracelet is part of a larger, technological initiative known as MyMagic+, which Walt Disney Parks and Resorts is rolling out over the next several months at Walt Disney World in Florida in an attempt to improve the overall guest experience.
At the meantime, the information on the bands is very secure. In Disney’s initial statement about MyMagic+ last week, the company said that with rfid bracelet, which the company has created for events such as the Coachella music festival and other theme parks, the guest’s credit card information is on a back-end server and is not housed on the actual wristband. In other words, no one can scan the wristband and get the credit card information.
What the RFID Bracelet can be used in Disney
“Imagine booking guaranteed ride times for your favorite shows and attractions, even before setting foot in the park,” Tom Staggs, chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, wrote on the Disney Parks Blog. “With MyMagic+, guests will be able to do that and more, enabling them to spend more time together and creating an experience that’s better for everyone.”
MyMagic+ includes a new website and a mobile app called My Disney Experience. The key to MyMagic+, both literally and figuratively, is an RFID (radio-frequency identification) technology embedded in each MagicBand bracelet. The technology, known as FastPass+, is an enhanced version of FastPass, the current system that enables guests to skip attraction lines.
FastPass+ will enable guests to book dining and other experiences and reserve times for certain attractions and shows in advance. Beyond the MagicBands, guests will also be able to use their smartphones to change their plans while at the park.
“It’s going to be a great benefit to our clients,” predicted Scott Liljenquist, co-owner of Draper, Utah-based Mouseketrips, an authorized Disney vacation planner. “It allows those people who really like to plan their trip well in advance to do so and avoid a lot of the lines and the waiting … and it’s a great thing, convenience-wise, because there’s not going to be any more tickets to lose or room rfid key to lose.
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