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Black Fire Innovation Hub Gains Intel as Computing Collaborator

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rendering of Black Fire Innovation facility

Black Fire Innovation facility aims to change the landscape of hospitality.

Black Fire Innovation, a research and technology hub created to drive innovation in the hospitality, gaming, and entertainment industry, announced that it will collaborate with Intel as a key computing partner. Intel will provide technology and computing resources to develop next-generation data-rich consumer experiences while offering research and internship opportunities for students and partners at the Black Fire Innovation facility, which is expected to open in January. The 43,000 square-foot resort and casino innovation lab aims to change the landscape of hospitality as a place where new concepts can be created and tested.

"With a proven track record of continually advancing the future of technology, Intel will elevate Black Fire Innovation while also advancing its expertise in IoT [Internet of Things], visual analytics, and bleeding-edge computing capabilities," says John Celona, vice president of business innovation and technology strategy for Caesars Entertainment. "Not only will they work alongside industry leaders and train the workforce of the future, Intel will play an integral role in improving the travel and hospitality customer experience."

"Intel has focused on delivering engaging experiences for generations, therefore a collaboration between Caesars Entertainment and UNLV was the perfect opportunity to create more immersive, responsive, and intuitive guest experiences," says Joe Jensen, vice president and general manager of Intel's Retail, Banking, Hospitality and Education Division. "Intel's commitment will provide the opportunity for industry partners to develop, integrate, and deploy guest-enhancing solutions to accelerate innovation in the hospitality segment."

Intel will also take up residence in the facility's co-working space, where experts will mentor and guide student interns and partners on course curriculum development that will bring industry-driven innovation to the classroom.

"This collaboration will push the boundaries of hospitality innovation and is exactly what we envisioned for Black Fire Innovation," says Zach Miles, UNLV associate vice president for economic development and president of the UNLV Research Foundation. "Intel's technical expertise onsite will accelerate research and development activities for our teams and partners, and it will prepare our students for integration into future-focused hospitality roles."

The core research focus for Black Fire Innovation is using emerging technologies to enhance the customer experience using blockchain, data science, robotic automation, artificial intelligence, and the Internet of Things. The space will offer opportunities for participating startups, researchers, and partners to examine how technology changes the way companies approach hospitality to appeal to evolving consumer tastes.

Black Fire Innovation will operate as an academic incubator, offering opportunities for students, entrepreneurs, and private industry partners who want to advance their research and test concepts. The collaborative space gives researchers unparalleled access to conduct on-demand testing of new ideas and products inside a replica integrated resort with a casino floor, mock hotel rooms, commercial kitchens capabilities, an esports arena, and virtual reality facilities.


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