After starting the roll out of FASTPASS+ technology at the Magic Kingdom, which not only included the installation of temporary (and subsequent permanent) RFID readers at return lines at select attractions, along with limited tests, as well as pilot programs to enter the theme parks via RFID and — most recently — pay for purchases and unlock hotel rooms using embedded RFID chips in the Key to the World (KTTW) cards at the Contemporary Resort, it appears Walt Disney World (NYSE:DIS) is steadily pushing on to establish its NextGen technology at the Resort, this time at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.
Within the past 24 hours (give or take), Walt Disney World has filed construction commencement notices with the Orange County Comptroller’s office, for virtually all of the theme parks’ attractions and shows. Citing a very generic ‘provide labor, material and/or electrical for construction’ reason, all of the documents list Disney’s own Buena Vista Construction Company as the contractor, as was the case for all recent work performed on Haunted Mansion, to cite an example.
Attractions referenced so far in the paperwork include Star Tours, Great Movie Ride, American Idol Experience, Beauty and the Beast Live on Stage, Disney Junior Live on Stage, Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular, Voyage of the Little Mermaid, Rock’n’Roller Coaster, Toy Story Mania, Tower of Terror, Muppet*Vision 3D, and Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show.
FASTPASS+ is an enhanced version of the FASTPASS attraction reservation system which will allow select guests to schedule opportunities to visit attractions and character meet and greets in advance of their visit to the Walt Disney World Resort. It is part of a larger program, MAGIC+, or ‘My Disney Experience’ which will allow the guest to customize and interact with the theme park environments way beyond what is possible today. Walt Disney World recently released an app titled My Disney Experience for Apple iOS devices which will provide the foundation of the new opportunities, which include allowing guests to integrate their mobile activity with their online accounts to share information and perform new tasks such as creating dining reservations from virtually anywhere. To aid with using the new app, the company has already rolled out free WiFi inside the Magic Kingdom Park and its resorts, with the rest of the theme parks expected to follow suit.