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Marlink Remains Largest Retail VSAT Service Provider in 2019

In Valour Consultancy’s latest maritime connectivity report, The Future of Maritime Connectivity – 2020 edition, Marlink Group remained the largest retail service provider for VSAT communication services in 2019. The global service provider increased its revenue market share from 23.1 per cent in 2018, to 23.9 per cent in 2019. 

Marlink has proactive approach to customer service ensuring all its clients and their vessels are functioning at an optimal performance. This has been a particularly poignant matter during the COVID-19 pandemic with large numbers of merchant seafarers stranded at sea away from their friends and families. In addition, the company’s history in the maritime market and strength across all the applications at the firm has also aided its mission of staying at the top of the VSAT retail market. Valour Consultancy estimates that Marlink had more than seven thousand vessels subscribed to its SeaLink VSAT service today. 

Valour Consultancy ranked Speedcast second in the retail VSAT market in 2019. Like Marlink, the company also increased its market share from 2018 primarily due to its acquisition of Globecomm. However, the firm has gone through some financial turmoil recently, filing for Chapter 11 in April 2020 and it will be interesting to see how it will perform in the next 12 months. 

Inmarsat continues to play a strong dual role in the market, providing wholesale MSS and VSAT satellite capacity to its value added resellers (service providers) and also serving some key customers directly. The firm, purchased by a private equity consortium in 2019, has done a good job of switching its large existing MSS customer base to its FX VSAT offerings whilst also getting its VARS to commit to fulfilling a number of vessels on its FX services. An example of this is demonstrated by Inmarsat’s strong relationship with Mitsui O.S.K. Lines (MOL), one of Japan’s largest shipping companies, who announced they plan to continue the roll out of FX across the remainder of all its owned and managed vessels  

Another notable maritime connectivity player has been KVH Industries. The firm has performed exceedingly well with its Agile Plans VSAT leasing service and reported shipping more than 10,000 VSAT antennas cumulatively earlier this year. Note this is across all mobility and land verticals. Nevertheless, its strength does reside within maritime and the firm has recently introduced its successful leasing plan to leisure market customers, opening up a significant number of vessels for new business. 

Unfortunately, Global Eagle has suffered somewhat over recent years and its market share dropped from 10 per cent in 2018 to less than 8 per cent in 2019. This is as a result of having lost a number of key passenger and offshore energy clients to other service providers in recent years. 

Valour Consultancy’s take on the retail VSAT maritime connectivity standings in 2019: 

Looking Forward 

According to the IMF in its June 2020 outlook update  – “Global growth is projected to decline by  –4.9 per cent in 2020, 1.9 percentage points below the April 2020 World Economic Outlook (WEO) forecast. The COVID-19 pandemic has had a more negative impact on activity in the first half of 2020 than anticipated, and the recovery is projected to be more gradual than previously forecast. In 2021 global growth is projected at 5.4 per cent. Overall, this would leave 2021 GDP some 6.5 percentage points lower than in the pre-COVID-19 projections of January 2020. The adverse impact on low-income households is particularly acute, imperiling the significant progress made in reducing extreme poverty in the world since the 1990s 

Valour Consultancy anticipates glass half full perspective. Yes, passenger and offshore energy markets have been decimated by the fear of the pandemic, travel restrictions and the unknown of what is nextNonetheless, other markets have remained less affected, if not up from 2019. The effect of having so many seafarers in the merchant market stranded at sea has been to increase crew welfare video, messaging and telephone communication usage over the last six months. Some of the super wealthy have also seconded themselves on their private superyachts for the period. In addition, the demand for overall food produce such as seafood has remained stable and the market is likely to remain steady over the year. There are many notable pain points in maritime satellite connectivity right now but also a few good ones. Our maritime connectivity report will be providing an October update on 2020 and new projections for 2021 onwards. For more information please click here 

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[fusion_builder_container hundred_percent="no" hundred_percent_height="no" hundred_percent_height_scroll="no" hundred_percent_height_center_content="yes" equal_height_columns="no" menu_anchor="" hide_on_mobile="small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility" status="published" publish_date="" class="" id="" border_size="" border_color="" border_style="solid" margin_top="" margin_bottom="" padding_top="" padding_right="" padding_bottom="" padding_left="" gradient_start_color="" gradient_end_color="" gradient_start_position="0" gradient_end_position="100" gradient_type="linear" radial_direction="center" linear_angle="180" background_color="" background_image="" background_position="center center" background_repeat="no-repeat" fade="no" background_parallax="none" enable_mobile="no" parallax_speed="0.3" background_blend_mode="none" video_mp4="" video_webm="" video_ogv="" video_url="" video_aspect_ratio="16:9" video_loop="yes" video_mute="yes" video_preview_image="" filter_hue="0" filter_saturation="100" filter_brightness="100" filter_contrast="100" filter_invert="0" filter_sepia="0" filter_opacity="100" filter_blur="0" filter_hue_hover="0" filter_saturation_hover="100" filter_brightness_hover="100" filter_contrast_hover="100" filter_invert_hover="0" filter_sepia_hover="0" filter_opacity_hover="100" filter_blur_hover="0"][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type="1_1" layout="1_1" spacing="" center_content="no" link="" target="_self" min_height="" hide_on_mobile="small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility" class="" id="" hover_type="none" border_size="0" border_color="" border_style="solid" border_position="all" border_radius="" box_shadow="no" dimension_box_shadow="" box_shadow_blur="0" box_shadow_spread="0" box_shadow_color="" box_shadow_style="" padding_top="" padding_right="" padding_bottom="" padding_left="" margin_top="" margin_bottom="" background_type="single" gradient_start_color="" gradient_end_color="" gradient_start_position="0" gradient_end_position="100" gradient_type="linear" radial_direction="center" linear_angle="180" background_color="" background_image="" background_image_id="" background_position="left top" background_repeat="no-repeat" background_blend_mode="none" animation_type="" animation_direction="left" animation_speed="0.3" animation_offset="" filter_type="regular" filter_hue="0" filter_saturation="100" filter_brightness="100" filter_contrast="100" filter_invert="0" filter_sepia="0" filter_opacity="100" filter_blur="0" filter_hue_hover="0" filter_saturation_hover="100" filter_brightness_hover="100" filter_contrast_hover="100" filter_invert_hover="0" filter_sepia_hover="0" filter_opacity_hover="100" filter_blur_hover="0" last="no"][fusion_imageframe image_id="5634|full" max_width="" style_type="" blur="" stylecolor="" hover_type="none" bordersize="" bordercolor="" borderradius="" align="none" lightbox="no" gallery_id="" lightbox_image="" lightbox_image_id="" alt="" link="" linktarget="_self" hide_on_mobile="small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility" class="" id="" animation_type="" animation_direction="left" animation_speed="0.3" animation_offset=""]https://valourconsultancy.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/09/v240mt_sixten-lundgren_for-web_w1860px-e1605709183233.jpg[/fusion_imageframe][fusion_separator style_type="default" hide_on_mobile="small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility" class="" id="" sep_color="#ffffff" top_margin="20" bottom_margin="20" border_size="" icon="" icon_circle="" icon_circle_color="" width="" alignment="center" /][fusion_text columns="" column_min_width="" column_spacing="" rule_style="default" rule_size="" rule_color="" hide_on_mobile="small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility" class="" id="" animation_type="" animation_direction="left" animation_speed="0.3" animation_offset=""] In Valour Consultancy’s latest maritime connectivity report, The Future of Maritime Connectivity – 2020 edition, Marlink Group remained the largest retail service provider for VSAT communication services in 2019. The global service provider increased its revenue market share from 23.1 per cent in 2018, to 23.9 per cent in 2019.  Marlink has proactive approach to customer service ensuring all its clients and their vessels are functioning at an optimal performance. This has been a particularly poignant matter during the COVID-19 pandemic with large numbers of merchant seafarers stranded at sea away from their friends and families. In addition, the company’s history in the maritime market and strength across all the applications at the firm has also aided its mission of staying at the top of the VSAT retail market. Valour Consultancy estimates that Marlink had more than seven thousand vessels subscribed to its SeaLink VSAT service today.  Valour Consultancy ranked Speedcast second in the retail VSAT market in 2019. Like Marlink, the company also increased its market share from 2018 primarily due to its acquisition of Globecomm. However, the firm has gone through some financial turmoil recently, filing for Chapter 11 in April 2020 and it will be interesting to see how it will perform in the next 12 months.  Inmarsat continues to play a strong dual role in the market, providing wholesale MSS and VSAT satellite capacity to its value added resellers (service providers) and also serving some key customers directly. The firm, purchased by a private equity consortium in 2019, has done a good job of switching its large existing MSS customer base to its FX VSAT offerings whilst also getting its VARS to commit to fulfilling a number of vessels on its FX services. An example of this is demonstrated by Inmarsat’s strong relationship with Mitsui O.S.K. Lines (MOL), one of Japan’s largest shipping companies, who announced they plan to continue the roll out of FX across the remainder of all its owned and managed vessels   Another notable maritime connectivity player has been KVH Industries. The firm has performed exceedingly well with its Agile Plans VSAT leasing service and reported shipping more than 10,000 VSAT antennas cumulatively earlier this year. Note this is across all mobility and land verticals. Nevertheless, its strength does reside within maritime and the firm has recently introduced its successful leasing plan to leisure market customers, opening up a significant number of vessels for new business.  Unfortunately, Global Eagle has suffered somewhat over recent years and its market share dropped from 10 per cent in 2018 to less than 8 per cent in 2019. This is as a result of having lost a number of key passenger and offshore energy clients to other service providers in recent years.  Valour Consultancy’s take on the retail VSAT maritime connectivity standings in 2019:  Looking Forward  According to the IMF in its June 2020 outlook update  - “Global growth is projected to decline by  –4.9 per cent in 2020, 1.9 percentage points below the April 2020 World Economic Outlook (WEO) forecast. The COVID-19 pandemic has had a more negative impact on activity in the first half of 2020 than anticipated, and the recovery is projected to be more gradual than previously forecast. In 2021 global growth is projected at 5.4 per cent. Overall, this would leave 2021 GDP some 6.5 percentage points lower than in the pre-COVID-19 projections of January 2020. The adverse impact on low-income households is particularly acute, imperiling the significant progress made in reducing extreme poverty in the world since the 1990s  Valour Consultancy anticipates glass half full perspective. Yes, passenger and offshore energy markets have been decimated by the fear of the pandemic, travel restrictions and the unknown of what is nextNonetheless, other markets have remained less affected, if not up from 2019. The effect of having so many seafarers in the merchant market stranded at sea has been to increase crew welfare video, messaging and telephone communication usage over the last six months. Some of the super wealthy have also seconded themselves on their private superyachts for the period. In addition, the demand for overall food produce such as seafood has remained stable and the market is likely to remain steady over the year. There are many notable pain points in maritime satellite connectivity right now but also a few good ones. Our maritime connectivity report will be providing an October update on 2020 and new projections for 2021 onwards. For more information please click here  [/fusion_text][/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]

Review of Onboard VSAT Connectivity on the Spirit of Tasmania

As part of Valour Consultancy’s remit to produce concise and comprehensive market research reports on the maritime connectivity market, we also like to get out of the office to test maritime connectivity systems out.

On Thursday 17th of January 2019, I crossed the Bass Strait from Melbourne to Devonport on the Spirit of Tasmania. The voyage was a relatively short duration of slightly more than 9 hours. I left Port Phillip Bay at 21:45 and arrived in Devonport at 07:00 of the morning of Friday 18th of January 2019.

During the journey, I purchased the onboard Full Sailing Wi-Fi pass for $20 AUD, equating to $14.35 USD. One other option was available, an hour Wi-Fi pass for $10 AUD.

Performance of Wi-Fi Network
Time – 22:24


My first speed test, 45 minutes into my journey, showed a download speed of 9.85 Mbps, and upload speed of 0.85 Mbps. The high download speed likely reflects the relatively few passengers using the service at the time. I didn’t test out internet pass for streaming any audio or video content, however, on the vessel’s marketing material, it states “certain types of content or high bandwidth intensive usages may be limited or blocked”. It was noticeable that web pages were taking 2-3 seconds to load up, and this is most likely a reflection of the high latency of the connection, which was stated in the marketing material of the vessel’s Internet pass.

Time – 00:28

My second speed test, almost three hours into the journey, and a significant distance from port, resulted in a much lower download speed, 2.54 Mbps, and an upload speed that was slightly lower than my first test of 0.80 Mbps.
It is unlikely more passengers would have been using the vessel’s connectivity system. It is possible more vessels were using the same capacity in the same area, or the system switched to another beam with less available capacity. On closer examination of Thaicom 4’s sport beams, it looks like there is one spot beam covering the Port Phillip Bay area close to land and another covering much of the rest of the Bass Strait and Tasmania.
Overall, I was very impressed with the speed of the service and ease of use, although I did encounter a few security warnings upon initially joining the network.

Service Provider and Satellite Operator

Shortly after purchasing the Internet pass, I received an invoice from Nava System – a service platform run by Orion Satellite Systems for its maritime activities. The company is based in Perth, Western Australia and is owned 100 per cent by Thaicom.
The Thai satellite operator serves five key verticals, and its maritime service resides in its mobility portfolio. The service operates predominantly on its IPStar (Thaicom – 4 satellite) Ku-band HTS service which is regionally focussed on China, India, Japan and the South East Asian countries, as well as Australia and New Zealand. The satellite has a Ku-band capacity of 45 Gbps.
Overall, the satellite operator has four other satellites and serves 13 countries in the Asia-Pacific, Middle East and Africa regions.
Please see the coverage map of Thaicom’s satellite 4 coverage service below:

Spirit of Tasmania aside, Thaicom’s other notable wins include announcing, in August 2018, Uniwise Offshore Limited, an Asian offshore support vessel operator that will use Nava on its entire fleet of more than 30 vessels. In November 2018 during in the firm’s Q3 2018 investor relations presentation, it was revealed that an additional 27 vessels were added to the Nava platform in Thailand, reaching a total of 47 vessels. Thaicom has also signed a contract with the Royal Thai Navy for an additional 12 vessels.

Equipment

Upon investigation on the top deck I caught a glimpse of two units, a large VSAT unit manufactured by SeaTel, and a Sailor L-band FBB terminal as a back-up system. It was difficult to gauge the size of the antenna due to the distance they were away from me.

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[fusion_builder_container hundred_percent="no" equal_height_columns="no" menu_anchor="" hide_on_mobile="small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility" class="" id="" background_color="" background_image="" background_position="center center" background_repeat="no-repeat" fade="no" background_parallax="none" parallax_speed="0.3" video_mp4="" video_webm="" video_ogv="" video_url="" video_aspect_ratio="16:9" video_loop="yes" video_mute="yes" overlay_color="" video_preview_image="" border_size="" border_color="" border_style="solid" padding_top="" padding_bottom="" padding_left="" padding_right=""][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type="1_1" layout="1_1" background_position="left top" background_color="" border_size="" border_color="" border_style="solid" border_position="all" spacing="yes" background_image="" background_repeat="no-repeat" padding_top="" padding_right="" padding_bottom="" padding_left="" margin_top="0px" margin_bottom="0px" class="" id="" animation_type="" animation_speed="0.3" animation_direction="left" hide_on_mobile="small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility" center_content="no" last="no" min_height="" hover_type="none" link=""][fusion_text columns="" column_min_width="" column_spacing="" rule_style="default" rule_size="" rule_color="" hide_on_mobile="small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility" class="" id="" animation_type="" animation_direction="left" animation_speed="0.3" animation_offset=""] As part of Valour Consultancy’s remit to produce concise and comprehensive market research reports on the maritime connectivity market, we also like to get out of the office to test maritime connectivity systems out. On Thursday 17th of January 2019, I crossed the Bass Strait from Melbourne to Devonport on the Spirit of Tasmania. The voyage was a relatively short duration of slightly more than 9 hours. I left Port Phillip Bay at 21:45 and arrived in Devonport at 07:00 of the morning of Friday 18th of January 2019. During the journey, I purchased the onboard Full Sailing Wi-Fi pass for $20 AUD, equating to $14.35 USD. One other option was available, an hour Wi-Fi pass for $10 AUD. Performance of Wi-Fi Network Time – 22:24 My first speed test, 45 minutes into my journey, showed a download speed of 9.85 Mbps, and upload speed of 0.85 Mbps. The high download speed likely reflects the relatively few passengers using the service at the time. I didn’t test out internet pass for streaming any audio or video content, however, on the vessel’s marketing material, it states “certain types of content or high bandwidth intensive usages may be limited or blocked”. It was noticeable that web pages were taking 2-3 seconds to load up, and this is most likely a reflection of the high latency of the connection, which was stated in the marketing material of the vessel’s Internet pass. Time – 00:28 My second speed test, almost three hours into the journey, and a significant distance from port, resulted in a much lower download speed, 2.54 Mbps, and an upload speed that was slightly lower than my first test of 0.80 Mbps. It is unlikely more passengers would have been using the vessel’s connectivity system. It is possible more vessels were using the same capacity in the same area, or the system switched to another beam with less available capacity. On closer examination of Thaicom 4’s sport beams, it looks like there is one spot beam covering the Port Phillip Bay area close to land and another covering much of the rest of the Bass Strait and Tasmania. Overall, I was very impressed with the speed of the service and ease of use, although I did encounter a few security warnings upon initially joining the network. Service Provider and Satellite Operator Shortly after purchasing the Internet pass, I received an invoice from Nava System – a service platform run by Orion Satellite Systems for its maritime activities. The company is based in Perth, Western Australia and is owned 100 per cent by Thaicom. The Thai satellite operator serves five key verticals, and its maritime service resides in its mobility portfolio. The service operates predominantly on its IPStar (Thaicom – 4 satellite) Ku-band HTS service which is regionally focussed on China, India, Japan and the South East Asian countries, as well as Australia and New Zealand. The satellite has a Ku-band capacity of 45 Gbps. Overall, the satellite operator has four other satellites and serves 13 countries in the Asia-Pacific, Middle East and Africa regions. Please see the coverage map of Thaicom’s satellite 4 coverage service below: Spirit of Tasmania aside, Thaicom’s other notable wins include announcing, in August 2018, Uniwise Offshore Limited, an Asian offshore support vessel operator that will use Nava on its entire fleet of more than 30 vessels. In November 2018 during in the firm’s Q3 2018 investor relations presentation, it was revealed that an additional 27 vessels were added to the Nava platform in Thailand, reaching a total of 47 vessels. Thaicom has also signed a contract with the Royal Thai Navy for an additional 12 vessels. Equipment Upon investigation on the top deck I caught a glimpse of two units, a large VSAT unit manufactured by SeaTel, and a Sailor L-band FBB terminal as a back-up system. It was difficult to gauge the size of the antenna due to the distance they were away from me. [/fusion_text][/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]

Maritime Service Provider Connectivity Rankings in 2017

In Valour Consultancy’s latest maritime connectivity report, “The Future of Maritime Connectivity – 2018 Edition”. It is estimated that, globally, there were over 262,500 active maritime satellite terminals (VSAT and L-band) by the end of 2017. This equated to a satellite connectivity retail market worth over $1.5 billion.

The number of VSAT terminals were estimated to account for just nine per cent of the global subscriber base in 2017, but associated revenues accounted for more than $1 billion, or 68 per cent of total revenues. L-band connectivity services generated $504 million in the same period.

A key question asked by many people in the industry is “How Did the Key Players Perform in 2017?”

Summary of 2017

  • Marlink made significant progress in the maritime connectivity market, winning many of the tenders it participated in. The firm was the largest supplier of retail maritime satellite services in 2017, with associated revenues of $340 million. It is believed 70 per cent of the top 50 merchant shipping companies subscribe to its services.
  • Speedcast completed the purchase of Harris Caprock in 2017 and will likely complete the acquisition of Globecomm before the end of 2018. The firm will become the second largest supplier of retail connectivity in 2018.
  • Inmarsat plays a prominent role in the maritime market and generated more than $564.7 million in the market overall – both through its wholesale and retail offerings in 2017. Valour Consultancy estimates the British satellite firm derived more than $200 million of revenues via direct channels in 2017.
  • Global Eagle continues to make steady progress in the industry, with its primary focus on passenger and leisure vessels. In July 2017, the firm introduced a new luxury brand called PRIVA, which replaces the legacy MTN brand that operated its yacht connectivity business.
  • Navarino had deployed 6,000 of its Infinity boxes (which support L-band and VSAT services) at the end of 2017, 60 per cent of which are served directly by Navarino. The firm also uses third-party maritime service providers for the remainder of its business. The firm held fifth position in the global maritime service provider market and accounted for 6 per cent of market revenues.

Deep-Dive

Marlink was the largest supplier of retail maritime satellite services in 2017, representing 22 per cent of global maritime service revenues. More than 65 per cent of the firm’s revenues were derived from VSAT connectivity services, and the remainder for L-band services; making Marlink the second largest global L-band reseller in the market in 2017.

The firm has enjoyed an enormously successful period in the merchant shipping sector, with more than 50 per cent of its business originating from this sector. Marlink caters connectivity solutions to more than 20,000 terminals. globally. In addition, the group has made several astute company acquisitions over the years, which include Telemar, Palantir, Livewire Connections and OmniAccess, all of which operate under the umbrella Marlink Group.

Inmarsat plays a dual role in the maritime market, one as a service provider serving customers directly and the other as a satellite operator, providing wholesale Ka-band and L-band capacity to service providers, as well as some Ku-band (legacy business). As a direct service provider, Inmarsat generated more than $200 million in 2017, accounting for 13 per cent of total revenues. The majority of the firm’s maritime revenues are derived from its L-band business; with its Fleetbroadband service generating slightly under $350 million in 2017. Its direct retail VSAT business generated more than $55 million in 2017. This will change significantly over the next few years as companies likes Navarino, Speedcast, Marlink and other service providers complete on their pledges to convert their existing L-band and Ku-band vessels to FX. Merchant, energy and fishing were Inmarsat’s largest applications in respective order of revenues.

The rise of Speedcast in the maritime satellite connectivity market over the last few years has been pronounced, particularly after the acquisition of Harris Caprock’s maritime business in 2017. In total, Valour Consultancy estimates Speedcast accounted for 12 per cent of maritime connectivity service revenues in 2017, representing global revenues of $186 million. Readers should note that we excluded a high portion of the firm’s revenues from the energy division due to its services to fixed platforms.

By the end of 2017, Navarino generated, globally, nearly $87 million in maritime connectivity service revenues, $37 million of which were associated with VSAT services. The service provider was actually Inmarsat’s top performing FX partner for all the quarters in 2017, surpassing Marlink and Speedcast’s FX installations. Nearly $50 million of its revenues were from L-band, primarily from Inmarsat’s Fleetbroadband offerings. The firm also provides some of Iridium’s Open Port packages, although this represented only a small number of its L-band deployments. Valour Consultancy estimates Navarino placed third in the L-band maritime connectivity service provider market in 2017, and thus represented 10 per cent of the L-band service provider market revenues.

Valour Consultancy presents the global rankings of the maritime connectivity service provider in 2017

Maritime Service Provider Connectivity Rankings in 2017

For more information about the full report, contact us here.

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[fusion_builder_container hundred_percent="no" equal_height_columns="no" menu_anchor="" hide_on_mobile="small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility" class="" id="" background_color="" background_image="" background_position="center center" background_repeat="no-repeat" fade="no" background_parallax="none" parallax_speed="0.3" video_mp4="" video_webm="" video_ogv="" video_url="" video_aspect_ratio="16:9" video_loop="yes" video_mute="yes" overlay_color="" video_preview_image="" border_size="" border_color="" border_style="solid" padding_top="" padding_bottom="" padding_left="" padding_right=""][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type="1_1" layout="1_1" background_position="left top" background_color="" border_size="" border_color="" border_style="solid" border_position="all" spacing="yes" background_image="" background_repeat="no-repeat" padding_top="" padding_right="" padding_bottom="" padding_left="" margin_top="0px" margin_bottom="0px" class="" id="" animation_type="" animation_speed="0.3" animation_direction="left" hide_on_mobile="small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility" center_content="no" last="no" min_height="" hover_type="none" link=""][fusion_imageframe image_id="4825|full" max_width="" style_type="" blur="" stylecolor="" hover_type="none" bordersize="" bordercolor="" borderradius="" align="none" lightbox="no" gallery_id="" lightbox_image="" lightbox_image_id="" alt="" link="" linktarget="_self" hide_on_mobile="small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility" class="" id="" animation_type="" animation_direction="left" animation_speed="0.3" animation_offset=""]http://217.199.187.200/valourconsultancy.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/11/Antenna-1024x494-1.jpg[/fusion_imageframe][fusion_separator style_type="default" hide_on_mobile="small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility" class="" id="" sep_color="#ffffff" top_margin="20" bottom_margin="20" border_size="" icon="" icon_circle="" icon_circle_color="" width="" alignment="center" /][fusion_text] In Valour Consultancy’s latest maritime connectivity report, “The Future of Maritime Connectivity – 2018 Edition”. It is estimated that, globally, there were over 262,500 active maritime satellite terminals (VSAT and L-band) by the end of 2017. This equated to a satellite connectivity retail market worth over $1.5 billion. The number of VSAT terminals were estimated to account for just nine per cent of the global subscriber base in 2017, but associated revenues accounted for more than $1 billion, or 68 per cent of total revenues. L-band connectivity services generated $504 million in the same period. A key question asked by many people in the industry is “How Did the Key Players Perform in 2017?” Summary of 2017
  • Marlink made significant progress in the maritime connectivity market, winning many of the tenders it participated in. The firm was the largest supplier of retail maritime satellite services in 2017, with associated revenues of $340 million. It is believed 70 per cent of the top 50 merchant shipping companies subscribe to its services.
  • Speedcast completed the purchase of Harris Caprock in 2017 and will likely complete the acquisition of Globecomm before the end of 2018. The firm will become the second largest supplier of retail connectivity in 2018.
  • Inmarsat plays a prominent role in the maritime market and generated more than $564.7 million in the market overall – both through its wholesale and retail offerings in 2017. Valour Consultancy estimates the British satellite firm derived more than $200 million of revenues via direct channels in 2017.
  • Global Eagle continues to make steady progress in the industry, with its primary focus on passenger and leisure vessels. In July 2017, the firm introduced a new luxury brand called PRIVA, which replaces the legacy MTN brand that operated its yacht connectivity business.
  • Navarino had deployed 6,000 of its Infinity boxes (which support L-band and VSAT services) at the end of 2017, 60 per cent of which are served directly by Navarino. The firm also uses third-party maritime service providers for the remainder of its business. The firm held fifth position in the global maritime service provider market and accounted for 6 per cent of market revenues.
Deep-Dive Marlink was the largest supplier of retail maritime satellite services in 2017, representing 22 per cent of global maritime service revenues. More than 65 per cent of the firm’s revenues were derived from VSAT connectivity services, and the remainder for L-band services; making Marlink the second largest global L-band reseller in the market in 2017. The firm has enjoyed an enormously successful period in the merchant shipping sector, with more than 50 per cent of its business originating from this sector. Marlink caters connectivity solutions to more than 20,000 terminals. globally. In addition, the group has made several astute company acquisitions over the years, which include Telemar, Palantir, Livewire Connections and OmniAccess, all of which operate under the umbrella Marlink Group. Inmarsat plays a dual role in the maritime market, one as a service provider serving customers directly and the other as a satellite operator, providing wholesale Ka-band and L-band capacity to service providers, as well as some Ku-band (legacy business). As a direct service provider, Inmarsat generated more than $200 million in 2017, accounting for 13 per cent of total revenues. The majority of the firm’s maritime revenues are derived from its L-band business; with its Fleetbroadband service generating slightly under $350 million in 2017. Its direct retail VSAT business generated more than $55 million in 2017. This will change significantly over the next few years as companies likes Navarino, Speedcast, Marlink and other service providers complete on their pledges to convert their existing L-band and Ku-band vessels to FX. Merchant, energy and fishing were Inmarsat’s largest applications in respective order of revenues. The rise of Speedcast in the maritime satellite connectivity market over the last few years has been pronounced, particularly after the acquisition of Harris Caprock’s maritime business in 2017. In total, Valour Consultancy estimates Speedcast accounted for 12 per cent of maritime connectivity service revenues in 2017, representing global revenues of $186 million. Readers should note that we excluded a high portion of the firm’s revenues from the energy division due to its services to fixed platforms. By the end of 2017, Navarino generated, globally, nearly $87 million in maritime connectivity service revenues, $37 million of which were associated with VSAT services. The service provider was actually Inmarsat’s top performing FX partner for all the quarters in 2017, surpassing Marlink and Speedcast’s FX installations. Nearly $50 million of its revenues were from L-band, primarily from Inmarsat’s Fleetbroadband offerings. The firm also provides some of Iridium’s Open Port packages, although this represented only a small number of its L-band deployments. Valour Consultancy estimates Navarino placed third in the L-band maritime connectivity service provider market in 2017, and thus represented 10 per cent of the L-band service provider market revenues. Valour Consultancy presents the global rankings of the maritime connectivity service provider in 2017 Maritime Service Provider Connectivity Rankings in 2017 For more information about the full report, contact us here. [/fusion_text][/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]

The Future of Maritime Connectivity – A Sneak Preview

In October 2018, Valour Consultancy will publish a long-awaited update to its maritime connectivity report. For those that simply cannot wait to get a hold of this information, we thought we’d share a sneak peek of our just-realised preliminary data…

Our statistics show that the global maritime connectivity market will continue to grow strongly in 2018, with annual service revenues projected to reach $1.6 billion by the end of the year. This represents a 5.4 per cent increase from 2017.

The VSAT portion of the market is anticipated to drive future growth, with MSS service revenues declining over the coming years. By the end of 2017, VSAT terminals accounted for only nine per cent of the installed base of vessels with some type of connectivity system installed. This will increase to 10 per cent by the end of 2018 and 18 per cent by 2027.

Revenues from VSAT terminal services represented 68 per cent of the total market (equivalent to some $1 billion) in 2017. Average monthly revenues per terminal for C-, Ku-, and Ka-band services differ considerably, however, and were recorded at $5,750, $3,078, and $2,757, respectively, in 2017. In comparison, average monthly service revenues for L-band terminals were just $169.

The passenger segment is a particularly lucrative market as many cruise and ferry line operators are seeking out greater satellite bandwidth capacities to match an ever-increasing demand from passengers to use Internet-enabled smartphones and tablets. Not only do people want to eat their breakfasts, lunches, and dinners; they wish to take pictures of them and post them on social media pages for all the world to see (or sea, if you pardon the pun).

In other maritime verticals, such as merchant, the desire to improve crew welfare is a major driver for the adoption of VSAT technologies for voice, video and email communications. Spending months away from friends and family without any communications can be sapping on morale and will likely lead to staff reconsidering their career or employment choices.

Another major driver within the shipping industry is the digitalisation of vessel operations and increasing operational efficiencies. One key cost saver is anticipating maintenance or repair work before a piece of machinery on the vessel breaks down out at sea, which is much costlier to fix than a vessel docked at a port.

Furthermore, people’s expectations are changing to the degree that not having the ability to access emails or messages is intolerable no matter where they are in the world, on land, at sea or in the air. This is a very notable trend in the leisure market. Yacht or smaller leisure boat owners want to continue with their normal life and business routines whilst sailing around the world. Access to connectivity is essential for them to achieve this.

The Future of Maritime Connectivity” report projects maritime connectivity service revenues will reach almost $2.1 billion by the end of 2027. The leisure and passenger segments are predicted to be the fastest growing areas. Indeed, ARPU for some of the biggest cruise vessels using VSAT systems is expected to easily surpass $30,000 per month.

Speedcast, the Australian service provider, has been very successful in the passenger market thanks in part to the 2017 acquisition of Harris Caprock and August 2018 purchase of Globecomm.

Within the next ten years, global VSAT terminal deployments will treble to more than 72,000 units. The Ka-band market is projected to record the biggest increase, expanding ten-fold from a small base of around 3,000 terminals at the end of 2017, to greater than 30,000 by 2027. In fact, Inmarsat recently revealed that it expects to carry out the 5,000th ship installation of its Fleet Xpress solution by the end of this month, which gives an idea of just how quickly this particular technology is being adopted.

With the prospects for VSAT in maritime incredibly rosy, it can be easy to overlook the MSS market. As such, the report also delves into the low-speed and no voice MSS segment (GMDSS and asset tracking) of the maritime communications market and provides forecasts for the broadband and voice portion (Fleet Broadband and OpenPort). Although VSAT is steadily cannibalising these markets across different maritime verticals, annual L-band service revenues are projected to decline at a slower rate than some might expect. Demand in the fishing, merchant and leisure sectors will continue to support this limited bandwidth technology.

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[fusion_builder_container hundred_percent="no" equal_height_columns="no" menu_anchor="" hide_on_mobile="small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility" class="" id="" background_color="" background_image="" background_position="center center" background_repeat="no-repeat" fade="no" background_parallax="none" parallax_speed="0.3" video_mp4="" video_webm="" video_ogv="" video_url="" video_aspect_ratio="16:9" video_loop="yes" video_mute="yes" overlay_color="" video_preview_image="" border_size="" border_color="" border_style="solid" padding_top="" padding_bottom="" padding_left="" padding_right=""][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type="1_1" layout="1_1" background_position="left top" background_color="" border_size="" border_color="" border_style="solid" border_position="all" spacing="yes" background_image="" background_repeat="no-repeat" padding_top="" padding_right="" padding_bottom="" padding_left="" margin_top="0px" margin_bottom="0px" class="" id="" animation_type="" animation_speed="0.3" animation_direction="left" hide_on_mobile="small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility" center_content="no" last="no" min_height="" hover_type="none" link=""][fusion_imageframe image_id="4867|full" max_width="" style_type="" blur="" stylecolor="" hover_type="none" bordersize="" bordercolor="" borderradius="" align="center" lightbox="no" gallery_id="" lightbox_image="" lightbox_image_id="" alt="" link="" linktarget="_self" hide_on_mobile="small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility" class="" id="" animation_type="" animation_direction="left" animation_speed="0.3" animation_offset=""]http://217.199.187.200/valourconsultancy.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/09/yacht-3480913_1280-min-1024x682-1.jpg[/fusion_imageframe][fusion_separator style_type="default" hide_on_mobile="small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility" class="" id="" sep_color="#ffffff" top_margin="20" bottom_margin="20" border_size="" icon="" icon_circle="" icon_circle_color="" width="" alignment="center" /][fusion_text]In October 2018, Valour Consultancy will publish a long-awaited update to its maritime connectivity report. For those that simply cannot wait to get a hold of this information, we thought we’d share a sneak peek of our just-realised preliminary data… Our statistics show that the global maritime connectivity market will continue to grow strongly in 2018, with annual service revenues projected to reach $1.6 billion by the end of the year. This represents a 5.4 per cent increase from 2017. The VSAT portion of the market is anticipated to drive future growth, with MSS service revenues declining over the coming years. By the end of 2017, VSAT terminals accounted for only nine per cent of the installed base of vessels with some type of connectivity system installed. This will increase to 10 per cent by the end of 2018 and 18 per cent by 2027. Revenues from VSAT terminal services represented 68 per cent of the total market (equivalent to some $1 billion) in 2017. Average monthly revenues per terminal for C-, Ku-, and Ka-band services differ considerably, however, and were recorded at $5,750, $3,078, and $2,757, respectively, in 2017. In comparison, average monthly service revenues for L-band terminals were just $169. The passenger segment is a particularly lucrative market as many cruise and ferry line operators are seeking out greater satellite bandwidth capacities to match an ever-increasing demand from passengers to use Internet-enabled smartphones and tablets. Not only do people want to eat their breakfasts, lunches, and dinners; they wish to take pictures of them and post them on social media pages for all the world to see (or sea, if you pardon the pun). In other maritime verticals, such as merchant, the desire to improve crew welfare is a major driver for the adoption of VSAT technologies for voice, video and email communications. Spending months away from friends and family without any communications can be sapping on morale and will likely lead to staff reconsidering their career or employment choices. Another major driver within the shipping industry is the digitalisation of vessel operations and increasing operational efficiencies. One key cost saver is anticipating maintenance or repair work before a piece of machinery on the vessel breaks down out at sea, which is much costlier to fix than a vessel docked at a port. Furthermore, people’s expectations are changing to the degree that not having the ability to access emails or messages is intolerable no matter where they are in the world, on land, at sea or in the air. This is a very notable trend in the leisure market. Yacht or smaller leisure boat owners want to continue with their normal life and business routines whilst sailing around the world. Access to connectivity is essential for them to achieve this. “The Future of Maritime Connectivity” report projects maritime connectivity service revenues will reach almost $2.1 billion by the end of 2027. The leisure and passenger segments are predicted to be the fastest growing areas. Indeed, ARPU for some of the biggest cruise vessels using VSAT systems is expected to easily surpass $30,000 per month. Speedcast, the Australian service provider, has been very successful in the passenger market thanks in part to the 2017 acquisition of Harris Caprock and August 2018 purchase of Globecomm. Within the next ten years, global VSAT terminal deployments will treble to more than 72,000 units. The Ka-band market is projected to record the biggest increase, expanding ten-fold from a small base of around 3,000 terminals at the end of 2017, to greater than 30,000 by 2027. In fact, Inmarsat recently revealed that it expects to carry out the 5,000th ship installation of its Fleet Xpress solution by the end of this month, which gives an idea of just how quickly this particular technology is being adopted. With the prospects for VSAT in maritime incredibly rosy, it can be easy to overlook the MSS market. As such, the report also delves into the low-speed and no voice MSS segment (GMDSS and asset tracking) of the maritime communications market and provides forecasts for the broadband and voice portion (Fleet Broadband and OpenPort). Although VSAT is steadily cannibalising these markets across different maritime verticals, annual L-band service revenues are projected to decline at a slower rate than some might expect. Demand in the fishing, merchant and leisure sectors will continue to support this limited bandwidth technology.[/fusion_text][/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]

Debunking Misconceptions About Connectivity in The Maritime Industry

When Nautilus International – a global trade union and professional association for seafarers and other crew in the maritime industry – carried out their 2017 investigation into connectivity at sea, major attention was given to the quality of connectivity that crew have onboard.

In an era where connectivity is no longer an expectation but a norm, this survey found that 88% of crew were able to connect to the Internet regularly, which is an improvement for an industry that tends to embrace technology relatively slowly.

Communication anomalies against connectivity onboard

Not only had connectivity made an impact on crew’s attitude towards long-term employment opportunities and social issues, it also redefined human resources retaining policies in accordance with the Maritime Labor Convention adopted in 2006.

Yet, this survey reported some communication anomalies that maritime employers need to address if they are to improve the lives of those who work in remote locations.

Whilst 83% of companies commented that they were concerned that crew may download illegal or adult content, only 16% of crew reported unauthorised content as a main reason for not providing Internet access for personal use.

At a first glance, maritime employers appear to be reluctant to the provision of onboard connectivity for cyber-security reasons, but firms fail to take heed of the growing interest of employees to work on a policy that solves any discrepancy with regards to connectivity for personal use.

As a matter of fact, 84% of respondents said they would be willing to sign an Internet usage policy with their employer if it were to translate into better connectivity while onboard.

Installations and running costs against connectivity onboard

Maritime employees also alluded that service installations and running costs are key reasons why companies deny Internet access for personal use onboard, which cannot be otherwise proven considering that every vessel has different bandwidth and/or communication needs.

While there are several packages and integral alternatives available to maritime companies in the market, debunking cost-related justifications requires valid scenario constructions and estimates, which, to some extent, were abstractly covered by the above-mentioned international survey.

Cognisant of VSAT broadband opportunities, iDirect has introduced, discussed, and analysed typical costs per MB based on C-band, Ku-band, and L-band coverage. By designing a business case for every broadband choice, this study developed a price spread for overall costs depending on usage profiles.

This construct has helped the group to amortise installation costs over fixed periods and put them together with monthly usage charges to conclude that C-band and Ku-band choices are more cost-effective than L-band coverage over the long-term.

From a financial perspective, iDirect argues that making an investment on VSAT technologies over the short-run could be painful, but the return on investment (ROI) over the long term outranks any pay-per-use model today. Yet, when it comes to satellite communications, integration and service adjustments are vital during a loss of service.

To avoid service disruptions, L-band coverage works impressively as a VSAT-backup alternative, which delivers resiliency at its best. For example, Iridium – a global satellite communications provider – is launching Iridium NEXT to create a new constellation of satellites with an upgraded L-band coverage, which is scheduled to be completed by mid-2018.

Distraction against connectivity onboard

Lastly, another critical obstacle to the provision of Internet access for personal use is distraction from work, which also adheres to the sailor’s perception of connectivity onboard, covered by marineinsights.com.

Motivated by the plausibility of connecting seafarers with their loved ones, this article outlined key disadvantages against Internet onboard ships based on behavioural justifications, risks on duty, and unapproved actions.

“Behavioural justifications” refers to reduced socialisation, inappropriate usage times, and social media addiction, whereas “unapproved actions” comprises conflicts and misunderstandings in usage, adult or questionable content, brand-damaging or immoral content, offensive or discrediting posts, and Internet piracy.

Notwithstanding the fact that both behavioural justifications and unapproved actions are side-effects of the investment in connectivity in deep waters, which commonly take place during recess time, “risks on duty” further details the effect that connectivity has upon performance.

Engaged seafarers explained that “risks on duty”, which includes watchkeeping interference, troubleshooting, and other work-related distractions increases the margin of error that certain tasks cannot simply afford.

Again, as it was anteriorly mentioned above, 84% of seafarers are willing to sign an Internet usage policy with their employer if that initiative translates into a better connectivity while onboard. However, when it comes to social interactions, this same survey shows that not speaking the common language makes a stronger impact upon social interaction onboard than crew connectivity.

Fulfilling operational and crew expectations by connecting vessels

Owners and operators cannot afford to underestimate the power of connectivity ever again. Note that maritime companies are facing continuous demands on data-driven applications for strategic decision-making and other operational/safety efficiencies that are pivotal to success.

Similarly, there is a growing emphasis in career progression and training methods that could only be powered by changes in service infrastructure. A new generation of seafarers are breaking the status-quo in the maritime industry, expecting uninterrupted connectivity for professional and personal use regardless of location.

Limiting connectivity today results in competitive disadvantage and stagnation not only for owners and operators but also for the entire industry. For that reason, the maritime industry needs to be reactive to crew demands, take a long-term approach towards crew retention, and start connecting vessels in the most reliable, cost-effective way.

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[fusion_builder_container hundred_percent="no" equal_height_columns="no" menu_anchor="" hide_on_mobile="small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility" class="" id="" background_color="" background_image="" background_position="center center" background_repeat="no-repeat" fade="no" background_parallax="none" parallax_speed="0.3" video_mp4="" video_webm="" video_ogv="" video_url="" video_aspect_ratio="16:9" video_loop="yes" video_mute="yes" overlay_color="" video_preview_image="" border_size="" border_color="" border_style="solid" padding_top="" padding_bottom="" padding_left="" padding_right=""][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type="1_1" layout="1_1" background_position="left top" background_color="" border_size="" border_color="" border_style="solid" border_position="all" spacing="yes" background_image="" background_repeat="no-repeat" padding_top="" padding_right="" padding_bottom="" padding_left="" margin_top="0px" margin_bottom="0px" class="" id="" animation_type="" animation_speed="0.3" animation_direction="left" hide_on_mobile="small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility" center_content="no" last="no" min_height="" hover_type="none" link=""][fusion_imageframe image_id="4870|full" max_width="" style_type="" blur="" stylecolor="" hover_type="none" bordersize="" bordercolor="" borderradius="" align="center" lightbox="no" gallery_id="" lightbox_image="" lightbox_image_id="" alt="" link="" linktarget="_self" hide_on_mobile="small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility" class="" id="" animation_type="" animation_direction="left" animation_speed="0.3" animation_offset=""]http://217.199.187.200/valourconsultancy.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/Ship.jpg[/fusion_imageframe][fusion_separator style_type="default" hide_on_mobile="small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility" class="" id="" sep_color="#ffffff" top_margin="20" bottom_margin="20" border_size="" icon="" icon_circle="" icon_circle_color="" width="" alignment="center" /][fusion_text]When Nautilus International – a global trade union and professional association for seafarers and other crew in the maritime industry – carried out their 2017 investigation into connectivity at sea, major attention was given to the quality of connectivity that crew have onboard. In an era where connectivity is no longer an expectation but a norm, this survey found that 88% of crew were able to connect to the Internet regularly, which is an improvement for an industry that tends to embrace technology relatively slowly. Communication anomalies against connectivity onboard Not only had connectivity made an impact on crew’s attitude towards long-term employment opportunities and social issues, it also redefined human resources retaining policies in accordance with the Maritime Labor Convention adopted in 2006. Yet, this survey reported some communication anomalies that maritime employers need to address if they are to improve the lives of those who work in remote locations. Whilst 83% of companies commented that they were concerned that crew may download illegal or adult content, only 16% of crew reported unauthorised content as a main reason for not providing Internet access for personal use. At a first glance, maritime employers appear to be reluctant to the provision of onboard connectivity for cyber-security reasons, but firms fail to take heed of the growing interest of employees to work on a policy that solves any discrepancy with regards to connectivity for personal use. As a matter of fact, 84% of respondents said they would be willing to sign an Internet usage policy with their employer if it were to translate into better connectivity while onboard. Installations and running costs against connectivity onboard Maritime employees also alluded that service installations and running costs are key reasons why companies deny Internet access for personal use onboard, which cannot be otherwise proven considering that every vessel has different bandwidth and/or communication needs. While there are several packages and integral alternatives available to maritime companies in the market, debunking cost-related justifications requires valid scenario constructions and estimates, which, to some extent, were abstractly covered by the above-mentioned international survey. Cognisant of VSAT broadband opportunities, iDirect has introduced, discussed, and analysed typical costs per MB based on C-band, Ku-band, and L-band coverage. By designing a business case for every broadband choice, this study developed a price spread for overall costs depending on usage profiles. This construct has helped the group to amortise installation costs over fixed periods and put them together with monthly usage charges to conclude that C-band and Ku-band choices are more cost-effective than L-band coverage over the long-term. From a financial perspective, iDirect argues that making an investment on VSAT technologies over the short-run could be painful, but the return on investment (ROI) over the long term outranks any pay-per-use model today. Yet, when it comes to satellite communications, integration and service adjustments are vital during a loss of service. To avoid service disruptions, L-band coverage works impressively as a VSAT-backup alternative, which delivers resiliency at its best. For example, Iridium – a global satellite communications provider – is launching Iridium NEXT to create a new constellation of satellites with an upgraded L-band coverage, which is scheduled to be completed by mid-2018. Distraction against connectivity onboard Lastly, another critical obstacle to the provision of Internet access for personal use is distraction from work, which also adheres to the sailor’s perception of connectivity onboard, covered by marineinsights.com. Motivated by the plausibility of connecting seafarers with their loved ones, this article outlined key disadvantages against Internet onboard ships based on behavioural justifications, risks on duty, and unapproved actions. “Behavioural justifications” refers to reduced socialisation, inappropriate usage times, and social media addiction, whereas “unapproved actions” comprises conflicts and misunderstandings in usage, adult or questionable content, brand-damaging or immoral content, offensive or discrediting posts, and Internet piracy. Notwithstanding the fact that both behavioural justifications and unapproved actions are side-effects of the investment in connectivity in deep waters, which commonly take place during recess time, “risks on duty” further details the effect that connectivity has upon performance. Engaged seafarers explained that “risks on duty”, which includes watchkeeping interference, troubleshooting, and other work-related distractions increases the margin of error that certain tasks cannot simply afford. Again, as it was anteriorly mentioned above, 84% of seafarers are willing to sign an Internet usage policy with their employer if that initiative translates into a better connectivity while onboard. However, when it comes to social interactions, this same survey shows that not speaking the common language makes a stronger impact upon social interaction onboard than crew connectivity. Fulfilling operational and crew expectations by connecting vessels Owners and operators cannot afford to underestimate the power of connectivity ever again. Note that maritime companies are facing continuous demands on data-driven applications for strategic decision-making and other operational/safety efficiencies that are pivotal to success. Similarly, there is a growing emphasis in career progression and training methods that could only be powered by changes in service infrastructure. A new generation of seafarers are breaking the status-quo in the maritime industry, expecting uninterrupted connectivity for professional and personal use regardless of location. Limiting connectivity today results in competitive disadvantage and stagnation not only for owners and operators but also for the entire industry. For that reason, the maritime industry needs to be reactive to crew demands, take a long-term approach towards crew retention, and start connecting vessels in the most reliable, cost-effective way.[/fusion_text][/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]

COMSAT and Speedcast: A Partnership that Enhances Trust and Customised Solutions for the Government

In the midst of global communications and sea-to-land connectivity developments, the government sector is inevitably striving to enhance major defence and communication technologies with key, fully trusted providers of satellite communications and IT experts. Though fewer stories can be disclosed as a form of authentic exemplification on this matter, the formal partnership between Speedcast and COMSAT speaks highly for the exposition of government challenges and, thereupon, benefits of innovative Very Small Aperture Terminal (VSAT) solutions.

Accordingly, Speedcast has entered into a strategic agreement with government satellite connectivity provider COMSAT to implement a jointly run global service offering of Ku-band VSAT services for governmental and other maritime service environments. In the pursuit of higher data rates for small ship antenna systems and spatial coverage, the combined network of Ku-band frequencies will power Speedcast’s roughly 8 GHz-band of global satellite capacity and COMSAT’s strategically allocated commercial teleport facilities in the United States in order to strengthen coverage for connectivity services.

It should be underlined that both actors have played a critical role in the global SATCOM industry, demonstrating proven trust records of intense customer focus, strong safety culture, and a holistic understanding of end-to-end remote satellite solutions under governmental communication needs. For instance, as a founding member of Intelsat, COMSAT, has pioneered the art of mobile satellite communications services to the US Navy by inserting the Marisat fleet network, while setting up the initial operating system of Inmarsat from the company’s two earth stations.

Speedcast has also distinguished itself with strong operational expertise in satellite communications, differentiated technologies, and world-class customer support. With more than three decades of experience in remote communications, Speedcast has also become the first partner of Tampnet for the implanting of 4G/LTE services in the Gulf of Mexico, which will take effect upon completion in 2018. As the winner of the 2017 WTA Independent Teleport of the year, Speedcast has also enhanced unbeatable trust and success with the January 2017 acquisition of Harris Caprock, upgrading its global infrastructure and securing organic-inorganic growth.

Together, both companies could facilitate government/military users access to the iDirect bandwidth network to guarantee reliable and secure connectivity for mission-critical applications. “COMSAT has always been at the forefront of SATCOM technology, innovating to provide enhanced services and support for our customers’ benefit,” said David Greenhill, president at COMSAT. “We recognise the same passion in the Speedcast team. This collaboration will allow us to mutually broaden our markets and better serve our customers.”

Yet, the government sector has differentiated requirements in regards to VSAT solutions, which encompasses public services, public safety, coverage, steady connectivity, and network security for the protection of mission-critical data and classified information. As government organisations and military agencies are switching to VSAT services for innovative network solutions, the satellite communications industry still has key challenges to rapidly overcome if it is to remain competitive.

Keeping up with the correct amount of bandwidth and capacity at any given time is a major challenge that requires careful planning against technical complexities. Failure to predict and allocate bandwidth options that fulfil the needs of the customer is not only proven to be costly and inefficient but also leads to a severe case of underperformance. Pivotally, military agencies urge global coverage to carry out critical missions at remote locations, which strictly requires a communication package that speaks for scalable bandwidth, improved-location capacity, and flexibility that adheres to a dynamic operational environment.

To add to the challenge, there is an increasing emphasis on mobility and integration of processes that complicates the delivery of seamless connectivity on demand. In an age of globalised, lopsided military missions, government customers are expecting solutions that support the use of ever-accumulating voice, data consumption, video applications, and other data-intensive features across a wide array of environments. Providers who take connectivity at heart, strive for integration of complex satellite communication solutions within an end-to-end managed service architecture, as a network design that allows users for anytime and anyplace access.

More importantly, as in the case of both, COMSAT and Speedcast, who enjoy full expertise in providing sufficient network capacity, coverage, and consistency to government users, critical importance should always be given to public safety and network security amongst other differentiated demands. Not acknowledging that success lies in the understanding of safety and security applications in this ubiquitous market, speaks for insufficient market understanding, fragmented deployment of network solutions, and dysfunctional models that jeopardise the protection of all information warfare and other sensitive data.

Far from the complexities against sophisticated innovations in regards to maritime communications, the strategic partnership between Speedcast and COMSAT not only highlights the vital expertise that both actors share in the provision of customised, end-to-end satellite communications solutions, but it also brings sound economic and engineering benefits to the strategic installation of a global network that supports public/data protection, resiliency, solid infrastructure, emergency/disaster backup responses, compatibility for the use of data-intensive applications, and instant communications capabilities of data on the move.

Precisely, as PJ Beylier, Speedcast’s CEO reported, “The opportunity for collaboration with COMSAT fits very well with Speedcast’s commitment to delivering robust, reliable, secure global communications solutions to government and military customers, no matter where operations take them… COMSAT’s experience in the government segment combined with our unmatched capacity, global network and customer support enable us to offer highly reliable and secure solutions to our customers.”

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[fusion_builder_container hundred_percent="no" equal_height_columns="no" menu_anchor="" hide_on_mobile="small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility" class="" id="" background_color="" background_image="" background_position="center center" background_repeat="no-repeat" fade="no" background_parallax="none" parallax_speed="0.3" video_mp4="" video_webm="" video_ogv="" video_url="" video_aspect_ratio="16:9" video_loop="yes" video_mute="yes" overlay_color="" video_preview_image="" border_size="" border_color="" border_style="solid" padding_top="" padding_bottom="" padding_left="" padding_right=""][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type="1_1" layout="1_1" background_position="left top" background_color="" border_size="" border_color="" border_style="solid" border_position="all" spacing="yes" background_image="" background_repeat="no-repeat" padding_top="" padding_right="" padding_bottom="" padding_left="" margin_top="0px" margin_bottom="0px" class="" id="" animation_type="" animation_speed="0.3" animation_direction="left" hide_on_mobile="small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility" center_content="no" last="no" min_height="" hover_type="none" link=""][fusion_text] In the midst of global communications and sea-to-land connectivity developments, the government sector is inevitably striving to enhance major defence and communication technologies with key, fully trusted providers of satellite communications and IT experts. Though fewer stories can be disclosed as a form of authentic exemplification on this matter, the formal partnership between Speedcast and COMSAT speaks highly for the exposition of government challenges and, thereupon, benefits of innovative Very Small Aperture Terminal (VSAT) solutions. Accordingly, Speedcast has entered into a strategic agreement with government satellite connectivity provider COMSAT to implement a jointly run global service offering of Ku-band VSAT services for governmental and other maritime service environments. In the pursuit of higher data rates for small ship antenna systems and spatial coverage, the combined network of Ku-band frequencies will power Speedcast’s roughly 8 GHz-band of global satellite capacity and COMSAT’s strategically allocated commercial teleport facilities in the United States in order to strengthen coverage for connectivity services. It should be underlined that both actors have played a critical role in the global SATCOM industry, demonstrating proven trust records of intense customer focus, strong safety culture, and a holistic understanding of end-to-end remote satellite solutions under governmental communication needs. For instance, as a founding member of Intelsat, COMSAT, has pioneered the art of mobile satellite communications services to the US Navy by inserting the Marisat fleet network, while setting up the initial operating system of Inmarsat from the company’s two earth stations. Speedcast has also distinguished itself with strong operational expertise in satellite communications, differentiated technologies, and world-class customer support. With more than three decades of experience in remote communications, Speedcast has also become the first partner of Tampnet for the implanting of 4G/LTE services in the Gulf of Mexico, which will take effect upon completion in 2018. As the winner of the 2017 WTA Independent Teleport of the year, Speedcast has also enhanced unbeatable trust and success with the January 2017 acquisition of Harris Caprock, upgrading its global infrastructure and securing organic-inorganic growth. Together, both companies could facilitate government/military users access to the iDirect bandwidth network to guarantee reliable and secure connectivity for mission-critical applications. “COMSAT has always been at the forefront of SATCOM technology, innovating to provide enhanced services and support for our customers’ benefit,” said David Greenhill, president at COMSAT. “We recognise the same passion in the Speedcast team. This collaboration will allow us to mutually broaden our markets and better serve our customers.” Yet, the government sector has differentiated requirements in regards to VSAT solutions, which encompasses public services, public safety, coverage, steady connectivity, and network security for the protection of mission-critical data and classified information. As government organisations and military agencies are switching to VSAT services for innovative network solutions, the satellite communications industry still has key challenges to rapidly overcome if it is to remain competitive. Keeping up with the correct amount of bandwidth and capacity at any given time is a major challenge that requires careful planning against technical complexities. Failure to predict and allocate bandwidth options that fulfil the needs of the customer is not only proven to be costly and inefficient but also leads to a severe case of underperformance. Pivotally, military agencies urge global coverage to carry out critical missions at remote locations, which strictly requires a communication package that speaks for scalable bandwidth, improved-location capacity, and flexibility that adheres to a dynamic operational environment. To add to the challenge, there is an increasing emphasis on mobility and integration of processes that complicates the delivery of seamless connectivity on demand. In an age of globalised, lopsided military missions, government customers are expecting solutions that support the use of ever-accumulating voice, data consumption, video applications, and other data-intensive features across a wide array of environments. Providers who take connectivity at heart, strive for integration of complex satellite communication solutions within an end-to-end managed service architecture, as a network design that allows users for anytime and anyplace access. More importantly, as in the case of both, COMSAT and Speedcast, who enjoy full expertise in providing sufficient network capacity, coverage, and consistency to government users, critical importance should always be given to public safety and network security amongst other differentiated demands. Not acknowledging that success lies in the understanding of safety and security applications in this ubiquitous market, speaks for insufficient market understanding, fragmented deployment of network solutions, and dysfunctional models that jeopardise the protection of all information warfare and other sensitive data. Far from the complexities against sophisticated innovations in regards to maritime communications, the strategic partnership between Speedcast and COMSAT not only highlights the vital expertise that both actors share in the provision of customised, end-to-end satellite communications solutions, but it also brings sound economic and engineering benefits to the strategic installation of a global network that supports public/data protection, resiliency, solid infrastructure, emergency/disaster backup responses, compatibility for the use of data-intensive applications, and instant communications capabilities of data on the move. Precisely, as PJ Beylier, Speedcast’s CEO reported, “The opportunity for collaboration with COMSAT fits very well with Speedcast’s commitment to delivering robust, reliable, secure global communications solutions to government and military customers, no matter where operations take them… COMSAT’s experience in the government segment combined with our unmatched capacity, global network and customer support enable us to offer highly reliable and secure solutions to our customers.” [/fusion_text][/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]

Cruise Line Connectivity and Partnering Opportunities

Over the years, the cruise line industry has experienced a period of continuous evolution in regards to integral communications and information technologies. Many stakeholders are leading this charge, since broadband connectivity is becoming a crucial component whereby many passengers decide which cruise line offers the greatest connection of all. The idea of people going on a family/solo cruise to “escape” from ther routine and other obligations is fast becoming outdated.

Nowadays, passengers, along with crew, are demanding superior levels of connectivity and bandwidth at port, near port, and on board. Major cruise companies are aware of this consumer pattern and have diverted efforts towards a systematic level of collaboration and innovation in the industry. In synergy, satellite communication providers and cruise line operators are working together to capitalise on opportunities based on infrastructure, expertise, passenger experience, and efficiencies offered by partnering.

With more than 25 million global passengers projected to cruise this year, carrying aboard multiple sensor-enabled devices with them, cruise line operators are determined to enable the advent of the Internet of Things (IoT) at sea to cure the urgency of costly manned processes and fragmented data management. Yet, its applicability requires a single unification of limitless data systems and a sharing architecture that facilitates end-to-end communications and industry optimisation.

In other words, the confluence of business and technical fashions in the pursuit of interoperability and standardisation of systems builds on incremental connectivity ashore, which is a detour to reach inexpensive and blazing-fast Internet connection for exigent passengers at sea. As an exemplification, it is imperative to observe how three top-tiered cruise line companies – Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings, Carnival Corporation, and Royal Caribbean Cruises – have announced strategic agreements with key satcom solution providers to respond to the demands of IoT at sea and meet the performance expectations of guests/crew on board.

To meet the growing demand for ship connectivity, EMC (now part of Global Eagle) has entered into a long-term strategic agreement with Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings for the provision of high throughput satellite (HTS) links, infotainment, and other terrestrial services. Through major investments in new multi-band antennas that are allocated in multiple strategic angles and Wi-Fi infrastructure, Norwegian Cruise Line has achieved competitive advantage using Very Small Aperture Terminals (VSAT) technology to have rich access to C-, and Ku-band frequencies at sea.

Auxiliary investments in terrestrial broadband networks and web browsing accelerating tools (in this case, EMC’s patented SpeedNet technology) were also implemented in the provision of superior passenger experience and online traffic management. Norwegian Cruise Line has strongly upgraded its Wi-Fi infrastructure to allow not only absolute, ship-to-shore connectivity, but also to develop smart switching technologies that enables passengers/crew to keep browsing using terrestrial links at port, while holding on to satellite links for operational and other core management priorities.

Similar efforts were also led by Carnival Corporation to further enhance guest-onboard experiences through major communication upgrades and innovation. The American-British cruise company signed a five-year contract agreement with Harris CapRock in 2013 to supply fully managed communication services to more than 100 ships across its ten global cruise line brands, using a multi-band VSAT system to enable vessels to power high bandwidth and connectivity under a flat-rate fee for social media usage.

Using the latest generation of iDirect communication technology, via hybrid C- and Ku band solutions, Harris CapRock masters the art of VSAT systems and infrastructure based on global coverage, specialised equipment, secured installation, ongoing maintenance, and, more importantly, 24/7 customer support centers to guarantee proactive monitoring and technical support. By expertise, Harris CapRock is committed to delivering highly improved bandwidth and performance with modern stabilised antennas systems in order to provide new services and infotainment solutions onboard.

Royal Caribbean Cruises has also established a strategic agreement with Harris CapRock to equip new Spacetrack stabilised antennas across its entire fleet, using a combination of Ku- and C-band connectivity. The main objective of the agreement is to provide reliable Internet access in order to attract younger passengers, help retain crew, and streamline operations while at sea. The Melbourne-based communications and IT provider has supplemented performance with the provision of advanced VSAT systems to increase bandwidth, reassigning satellite capacity on demand through a more secure and cost-effective angle.

The collaboration likewise integrates O3b’s medium Earth orbit (MEO) satellite systems for two Royal Caribbean ships, Oasis of the Seas and Allure of the Seas, to benefit from unmatched capacity, consistency, and coverage. Technically, MEO satellites, which orbit the earth at an altitude of approximately 8,000 kilometers, enable even higher bandwidth services as well as optimised Internet and broadband connectivity without experiencing the traditional satellite delays (lag). This new platform improves overall communications performance and guest/crew online experience through breaking-record Internet speed and reliable Wi-Fi capacity.

For the most part, the aforementioned cases explain how cruise ship operators contrastingly partner with major satcom providers to cope with their most perilous challenge – the fulfillment of passenger expectations. However, the key takeaway is that new global technologies that comprises cloud, IOT, mobile platforms, satellite, and big data management are helping turn connectivity challenges into sustainable end-to-end solutions for the maritime sector.

More importantly, cruise operators are required to keep prioritising technology strategies that encourage innovations to pursue an integrated, fully-managed satellite, wireless, and terrestrial connectivity platform to remain ahead of the curve. The ideal communication solution should also embrace hybrid systems, smart switching functions to increase performance at any given point during the voyage, and supporting applications to enhance passenger experience onboard.

Valour Consultancy will soon commence work on the second edition of its acclaimed report “The Future of Maritime Connectivity”. If you would like to learn more about how you can influence the scope of this research so that it more closely matches your needs, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.

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[fusion_builder_container hundred_percent="no" equal_height_columns="no" menu_anchor="" hide_on_mobile="small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility" class="" id="" background_color="" background_image="" background_position="center center" background_repeat="no-repeat" fade="no" background_parallax="none" parallax_speed="0.3" video_mp4="" video_webm="" video_ogv="" video_url="" video_aspect_ratio="16:9" video_loop="yes" video_mute="yes" overlay_color="" video_preview_image="" border_size="" border_color="" border_style="solid" padding_top="" padding_bottom="" padding_left="" padding_right=""][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type="1_1" layout="1_1" background_position="left top" background_color="" border_size="" border_color="" border_style="solid" border_position="all" spacing="yes" background_image="" background_repeat="no-repeat" padding_top="" padding_right="" padding_bottom="" padding_left="" margin_top="0px" margin_bottom="0px" class="" id="" animation_type="" animation_speed="0.3" animation_direction="left" hide_on_mobile="small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility" center_content="no" last="no" min_height="" hover_type="none" link=""][fusion_imageframe image_id="5000|full" max_width="" style_type="" blur="" stylecolor="" hover_type="none" bordersize="" bordercolor="" borderradius="" align="center" lightbox="no" gallery_id="" lightbox_image="" lightbox_image_id="" alt="" link="" linktarget="_self" hide_on_mobile="small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility" class="" id="" animation_type="" animation_direction="left" animation_speed="0.3" animation_offset=""]http://217.199.187.200/valourconsultancy.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/ferry-boat-123059_1920-1024x685-1.jpg[/fusion_imageframe][fusion_separator style_type="default" hide_on_mobile="small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility" class="" id="" sep_color="#ffffff" top_margin="20" bottom_margin="20" border_size="" icon="" icon_circle="" icon_circle_color="" width="" alignment="center" /][fusion_text]Over the years, the cruise line industry has experienced a period of continuous evolution in regards to integral communications and information technologies. Many stakeholders are leading this charge, since broadband connectivity is becoming a crucial component whereby many passengers decide which cruise line offers the greatest connection of all. The idea of people going on a family/solo cruise to “escape” from ther routine and other obligations is fast becoming outdated. Nowadays, passengers, along with crew, are demanding superior levels of connectivity and bandwidth at port, near port, and on board. Major cruise companies are aware of this consumer pattern and have diverted efforts towards a systematic level of collaboration and innovation in the industry. In synergy, satellite communication providers and cruise line operators are working together to capitalise on opportunities based on infrastructure, expertise, passenger experience, and efficiencies offered by partnering. With more than 25 million global passengers projected to cruise this year, carrying aboard multiple sensor-enabled devices with them, cruise line operators are determined to enable the advent of the Internet of Things (IoT) at sea to cure the urgency of costly manned processes and fragmented data management. Yet, its applicability requires a single unification of limitless data systems and a sharing architecture that facilitates end-to-end communications and industry optimisation. In other words, the confluence of business and technical fashions in the pursuit of interoperability and standardisation of systems builds on incremental connectivity ashore, which is a detour to reach inexpensive and blazing-fast Internet connection for exigent passengers at sea. As an exemplification, it is imperative to observe how three top-tiered cruise line companies – Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings, Carnival Corporation, and Royal Caribbean Cruises – have announced strategic agreements with key satcom solution providers to respond to the demands of IoT at sea and meet the performance expectations of guests/crew on board. To meet the growing demand for ship connectivity, EMC (now part of Global Eagle) has entered into a long-term strategic agreement with Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings for the provision of high throughput satellite (HTS) links, infotainment, and other terrestrial services. Through major investments in new multi-band antennas that are allocated in multiple strategic angles and Wi-Fi infrastructure, Norwegian Cruise Line has achieved competitive advantage using Very Small Aperture Terminals (VSAT) technology to have rich access to C-, and Ku-band frequencies at sea. Auxiliary investments in terrestrial broadband networks and web browsing accelerating tools (in this case, EMC’s patented SpeedNet technology) were also implemented in the provision of superior passenger experience and online traffic management. Norwegian Cruise Line has strongly upgraded its Wi-Fi infrastructure to allow not only absolute, ship-to-shore connectivity, but also to develop smart switching technologies that enables passengers/crew to keep browsing using terrestrial links at port, while holding on to satellite links for operational and other core management priorities. Similar efforts were also led by Carnival Corporation to further enhance guest-onboard experiences through major communication upgrades and innovation. The American-British cruise company signed a five-year contract agreement with Harris CapRock in 2013 to supply fully managed communication services to more than 100 ships across its ten global cruise line brands, using a multi-band VSAT system to enable vessels to power high bandwidth and connectivity under a flat-rate fee for social media usage. Using the latest generation of iDirect communication technology, via hybrid C- and Ku band solutions, Harris CapRock masters the art of VSAT systems and infrastructure based on global coverage, specialised equipment, secured installation, ongoing maintenance, and, more importantly, 24/7 customer support centers to guarantee proactive monitoring and technical support. By expertise, Harris CapRock is committed to delivering highly improved bandwidth and performance with modern stabilised antennas systems in order to provide new services and infotainment solutions onboard. Royal Caribbean Cruises has also established a strategic agreement with Harris CapRock to equip new Spacetrack stabilised antennas across its entire fleet, using a combination of Ku- and C-band connectivity. The main objective of the agreement is to provide reliable Internet access in order to attract younger passengers, help retain crew, and streamline operations while at sea. The Melbourne-based communications and IT provider has supplemented performance with the provision of advanced VSAT systems to increase bandwidth, reassigning satellite capacity on demand through a more secure and cost-effective angle. The collaboration likewise integrates O3b’s medium Earth orbit (MEO) satellite systems for two Royal Caribbean ships, Oasis of the Seas and Allure of the Seas, to benefit from unmatched capacity, consistency, and coverage. Technically, MEO satellites, which orbit the earth at an altitude of approximately 8,000 kilometers, enable even higher bandwidth services as well as optimised Internet and broadband connectivity without experiencing the traditional satellite delays (lag). This new platform improves overall communications performance and guest/crew online experience through breaking-record Internet speed and reliable Wi-Fi capacity. For the most part, the aforementioned cases explain how cruise ship operators contrastingly partner with major satcom providers to cope with their most perilous challenge - the fulfillment of passenger expectations. However, the key takeaway is that new global technologies that comprises cloud, IOT, mobile platforms, satellite, and big data management are helping turn connectivity challenges into sustainable end-to-end solutions for the maritime sector. More importantly, cruise operators are required to keep prioritising technology strategies that encourage innovations to pursue an integrated, fully-managed satellite, wireless, and terrestrial connectivity platform to remain ahead of the curve. The ideal communication solution should also embrace hybrid systems, smart switching functions to increase performance at any given point during the voyage, and supporting applications to enhance passenger experience onboard. Valour Consultancy will soon commence work on the second edition of its acclaimed report “The Future of Maritime Connectivity”. If you would like to learn more about how you can influence the scope of this research so that it more closely matches your needs, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.[/fusion_text][/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]