News Disney Genie digital assistant app coming to Walt Disney World

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Sir_Cliff

Well-Known Member
I’m growing more and more disillusioned with Disney trying to control everything about your stay. I love Disney World don’t get me wrong, but they now highly schedule every aspect of your trip. I come from a line of work where I’m on a very rigid schedule. I’m much more of a go with the flow person on vacation. But it sound like even more so with Genie that can’t be possible.
Isn't this the truth. Even if you're fairly relaxed about what you see and do, it's getting harder and harder to find anything that ever has a reasonable queue without planning and booking FPs in advance. Couple that with closing early while giving us the "perk" of getting up and to the MK by the extra magical hour of 7am, and this is not feeling like a vacation anymore.

This summer I went to a remote village and hiking in the mountains of southern Colombia where there is very limited local transportation or lodging and where security is a bit of an issue. I swear to you, it required far less thought and planning than a week at the Grand Floridian.
 
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DisneyDebRob

Well-Known Member
I can almost remember the exact quote from Disney years ago.. “This is a place.. where you look up.. and down and all around.. to see the details.. put your phone away and see everything we have to offer”. Not the exact quote but I so remember them stressing the phone part and the details part. Magic bands started and people can’t put the phones down, with this, expect no heads up anymore.
 

easyrowrdw

Well-Known Member
And this is why there are Authorized Disney Vacation Planners. The Genie will probably do what’s best for the company...not what’s best for the consumer.

I remember talking to a friend who used a vacation planner. The amount of incorrect information they gave this friend was staggering. At least they didn't pay for it, I guess. But that's to say nothing of services that charge money and still give bad advice. It's just too bad Disney's IT is so untrustworthy.
 

George

Liker of Things
Premium Member
I don’t know what everyone is complaining about. I got a crap tonne of fastpasses for some brand new (!) animation class in the old DAK petting zoo arena at the last second. Plus, a candle light dinner in Germany with Neil Patrick Harris! Only drawback is that it is currently scheduled for a month after our trip ends, but I’m sure with some appy magic, I can change it once I’m there.
 

fngoofy

Well-Known Member
Ah I see you’re assuming that Disney Skynet will work... how cute.
I think MDE has come a long way. I made my dining & FP reservations via it and I use it to see wait times when in the park.
It's worked fine for our family. Once some FPs were deleted, but a quick stop in Guest Relations got them right back.

This new feature will be a boon to those new to WDW, but also for those wanting a nice "package itinerary" put together for a day.
 

TheGuyThatMakesSwords

Well-Known Member
Like many of you, I am utterly unimpressed with MDE and have no confidence in Disney's IT. I mean, just look at this thread - among others, I have advised folks to use InPrivate/Incognito mode, clear cookies and cache, and my favorite advice - have multiple browsers + your phone open in efforts to make ADRs and FPs.

But the guy that hammers this area is @TheGuyThatMakesSwords, who has been all over the wretched infrastructure. I'd love to get his take on this, and whether this is a complete rebuild, or it's just a band-aid on a bullet wound.

Regardless, I'll stick with @lentesta and Touring Plans. I love Disney, and I swing more toward Pixie-Duster than Doom-and-Gloomer, but their IT is so bad, and their motives so suspect, that I can't imagine this being useful to most of the folks that populate this board.

My take? First, FIX WHAT YOU HAVE. THEN play with added functionality. To me? This effort is a lot like putting a 2nd Story addition onto a home with a crumbling foundation. :(. It's that back-end central DB system that needs some serious attention :(.
 

easyrowrdw

Well-Known Member
Then that friend used the wrong vacation planner.

Yes, that's my point (but they're not the only ones who get it wrong). Authorized Disney Vacation Planner isn't the be all and end all, nor is any third-party service. You're putting your vacation in the hands of someone who should know what they're talking about. That Disney hasn't provided better guidance has opened up the opportunity for other companies. But if said companies steer folks wrong it's not good for Disney. Given that Disney seems to be holding back more information and changing hours closer and closer to the dates, they're already making it harder for the outside planners. If Disney can get their act together this could be really helpful.
 

WDWFREAK53

Well-Known Member
Yes, that's my point (but they're not the only ones who get it wrong). Authorized Disney Vacation Planner isn't the be all and end all, nor is any third-party service. You're putting your vacation in the hands of someone who should know what they're talking about. That Disney hasn't provided better guidance has opened up the opportunity for other companies. But if said companies steer folks wrong it's not good for Disney. Given that Disney seems to be holding back more information and changing hours closer and closer to the dates, they're already making it harder for the outside planners. If Disney can get their act together this could be really helpful.

I agree. My issue with Disney Genie is more with the fact that they will probably schedule your 'hard-earned money' vacation to better suit their operations rather than helping you get the most out of your vacation. If I was a newbie WDW visitor, I'd rather put my trust in someone that also pays for their vacations and gets the best out of their dollar than some computer "wizard" that spits out answers based on the needs of the company.
 

Janir

Well-Known Member
This could be really good, or an even worse version of MDE. MDE can be great when it works, but it doesn't work so often...
I can get it to work when I'm at home, but after a day or two in Florida, it no longer will even load. Or all the times that it just plain crashes completely.

And the Disneyland version I still after a month of trying can't get it to add our tickets, and we've only got a month left until we go. Hoping it will decide to work so we use MaxPass.

So unless they can manage to fix app killing bugs like that, I don't care what else it does, it won't do it. Hopefully that's part of it as it sounds like it's a complete rebuild.

I've found the Disney WIFI to be just too congested and slow for the MDE to work reliably. I've always been better off with my cell service or a WIFI hotspot to a strong cell service like Verizon. But in general the MDE app is too 'chatty' to the backend. There need to be some better way for them to cache data on the mobile and use some sort of message broker system in between the mobile devices and the MDE backend to provide some intermediate data caching needs to speed up data access. MDE interface has been cleaned up and gotten better the the heavy lifting work of the backend is what really needs to be improved.
 

Mr Disney

Active Member
In the Parks
Yes
Am I the only person that doesn't really have problems anymore with the MDE app? I can usually view my photos right away, FP+ system seems to be smooth... I haven't had any frustrations until SWGE opening, and even then I was able to join a boarding party and the notification system worked flawlessly.
 

larryz

I'm Just A Tourist!
Premium Member
If only it could be so...
tumblr_nejupaptTg1trbh6do1_400.gif
 

Minnesota disney fan

Well-Known Member
About certified Disney TA's: We have always used the same Disney TA and have had great results. She knows our likes and dislikes; she finds deals not listed; and gets the best price on their complicated charging system for reservations. I don't know if I just got lucky, but she is excellent in what she does. She has other travel destinations she books for also, but Disney is her main one. We would be lost without her. I would hope that the person who got a "bad" one would try another Disney certified TA.
 

DisAl

Well-Known Member
Replace "I'm from the government I'm here to help you" with I'm from Disney. I'm here to help you.
Same result.
 

sndral

Active Member
Of course this will be monetized; although I'll buck the trend and say I don't see this as a bad thing.
...- My biggest takeaway from this is that it will be a truly real time upcharge system, meaning the paid Fastpass options that will be offered will be priced based on specific demand for the individual attractions at that point in time. It may be $50 per SDMT Fastpass on an average attendance day at 10am, but it may be $150-$200 on a slammed afternoon. The prices may be eye-watering, but you get effectively immediate access.

This is going to be a goldmine. Don't underestimate the appeal of instant gratification in American society. Spontaneity returns! (For a price.)
Hard for me to imagine those prices for a FP for one ride on top of park prices. Currently CA’s max pass is a $15 per day upcharge, DL Paris’ immediate skip the lines option appears to be $36+ per day upcharge. I just can’t see a family of 4 paying $200 - $800 on top of the price of their entry tickets to ride one ride.
I’m not very optimistic about this Genie thing - I just don’t like the feeling of being herded like sheep in whatever direction Disney’s operations wants me to go. Plus, the people coming up with these ‘solutions’ lately seem very out of touch with what real visitors actually experience in the parks. They seem to have these models/theories about how things are supposed to work which just don’t pan out - but maybe I’m a bit jaded from too many long waits beyond my ADR times, long waits in FP lines, long waits for buses as the screen keeps extending the predicted arrival time for the next bus, etc..
 
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