At the start of the COVID-19 outbreak, there was much focus on a few cruise ships where the infection had spread, and many wondered if the industry could ever recover. However, this recent piece “Some holidaymakers can’t wait for their next cruise” from the Financial Times newspaper paints a brighter picture with bookings for 2021 almost at the same level as last year.
To restore faith, of course cruise companies will have to adopt the tightest health checks and constant sanitation. However, it will have to offer additional, and higher quality, services to their customers. Given that there’s only so much food and drink that can be consumed, the provision of always-on, fast and reliability connectivity is an area where ships are really able to differentiate themselves.
As The Cruise Critic asks “Remember a time when cruising truly meant getting away from it all? Blissfully unaware of work piling up at the office, no mobile phones buzzing with messages or laptops cluttering up luggage, the cruiser simply tuned out and kicked back. But times have changed”.
At Telecom26 we can vouch for that. Our cruise liner companies know that they need to provide ship-wide Wi-Fi as well as connectivity to, from and on-board cruise ships (it’s easy to lose each other on those massive vessels!).
For years, satellite has been the mainstay for maritime connectivity. However, things have moved on since the glory of days of Inmarsat. The operations team at the cruise companies now have options beyond 100% reliance on expensive satellite.
However, the major problem with the cellular at sea approach is that multiple SIMs have been required to ensure coverage throughout the cruise. As the ship crosses borders, so the network operators will change.
With the specific goal of improving connectivity at sea, Telecom26 has a multi-pronged approach:
These enable one SIM to access multiple networks both in-country and across borders thus removing the need to worry about the coverage of a single MNO, or the existence of roaming alliances. Multiple-IMSI profiles are pre-loaded on every SIM allowing for simple reconfiguration if the primary network has poor or no service.
Our Multi-IMSI global SIMs automatically select the best performing network in the area, cross-border, while providing users with the freedom to change SIM profiles and services with ease.
This provides Wi-Fi to passengers and crew who would use their own devices and SIMs. When a ship is cruising along the coast or anchored at port, the SIMs would use the best available cellular network and switch to satellite only when absolutely necessary.
We are delighted to announce that, thanks to the hard work of Telecom26’s R&D team, we have been able to cut the cost of nearshore martime connectivity for boats and ships of all sizes.
With rates as low as €2 per GB, and data bundles of over 2.5TB, our service is now even more affordable - and optimised for ships and offshore infrastructure.
In addition to full data service, the service also may include:
To learn more about Telecom26’s suite of maritime including nearshore connectivity services please visit click here.
Head QuartersTelecom26 AG