“We have previously considered the introduction of satellite communication based services for the welfare of our crews who stay on board for long periods of time. But the investment costs and monthly fees were prohibitively expensive,” said Takahiro Akaishi, executive officer of Ocean Trans Co. “The IPSTAR Maritime service is very cost-effective and we are now considering its introduction on all vessels of our fleet scheduled to be completed by 2016.”
IPSTAR says that its Maritime Broadband allows crews to call home, send e-mails, share photos and access social networks, without interrupting operational communications.
In Japan, the service was launched with speeds of up to 4Mbps/2Mbps and prices starting at 5 million yens ($50,000) for the equipment and installation, with monthly service fees ranging from 30,000 to 50,000 yens ($300-$500).
IPSTAR targets long-distance ferries and merchant vessels with this Maritime Broadband service, which it will introduce in other markets in Asia Pacific as well.