Smart cells at sea; “High yields on the high seas”
Next generation mobile broadband network infrastructure serves as a foundation and glue needed to develop smart living and smart working environment. The phenomenal growth in gigabit computing devices and data hungry applications has necessitated an ecosystem of integrated verticals with extended broadband access to maintain and grow the businesses. One of the recents but mostly deliberated, widely acceptable and rapidly deployable solution to resolve coverage and capacity issues in this context is small cells.
Generally accepted statistics indicate that more than 90% of global trade is carried by sea. The eternal triangle of producers, manufacturers and markets are brought together through shipping. This has always been the case and will remain so for the foreseeable future. In addition to naval fleets, thousands of cargo ships, tankers, bulk carriers, fishing vessels and passenger ships are always in business at sea. An integrated optimized and bundled smart services proposition for small cells onboard shall enhance customer engagement besides realizing the need of always connected smart ships.
To sustain and further enhance its high volume business operations, maritime industry is embracing rapid technological advancements to address ship’s safety, security and efficiency. Integrated systems, applications and e-navigation are new ways of managing, tracking and monitoring ships at sea. A satellite based global vessel traffic management and monitoring system through harmonization of marine navigation systems and supporting shore services is the next step forward to ensure safety and security of ships alongwith its crew and passengers.
- Optimized broadband satellite connectivity for small cells at sea
- Gigabit wireless network on ships, offshore platforms and ports
- Smart monitoring of assets, utilities and infrastructure auxiliaries
- Access to public safety networks and incident response teams
- Smart services like telemedicine, e-learning and cloud TVE
- Broadcasting reality shows, game shows, musical concerts live from ships
- E-commerce; online shopping, trading, investments and banking etc
- Connected offshore wind, solar, currents and hybrid power platforms
This proposition has a global impact and extensive beneficial offerings for operators, service providers, vendors, system integrators, maritime industry, ship’s crew, cruise passengers and communities around ports.
- High throughput broadband connectivity at sea will enhance ship’s efficiency, operational performance, safety and security of passengers, crew and ship’s assets.
- Heightened security for life and business at sea. Ship’s capability to withstand natural/manmade disasters will be increased.
- Ship liners will be able to retain & expand business and attract new customers by opening new business avenues and introducing value added service offerings.
- Fast track shipping will reduce the lead times and increase trading volumes.
- Smart monitoring and security through always connected ships will result in huge insurance discounts creating allowance for affordable fares/freight packages.
- Enhanced customer engagement through bundled VAS will increase interest in cruise excursions, marine research and real estate investments in island properties.
- Exponential growth in stock markets, shipping and warehousing industry
- Enhanced sea endurance, digitally empowered resources and productive seatime.
- Surveillance, navigational and weather RADARs onboard as well as coastline installations can be better connected for real-time data transmission/ video feeds
- Smart grids at sea (off shore wind, solar, current and hybrid energy farms)
- Mobile hospitals and mobile workshops providing professional services at sea.
- Possibility to establish offshore hospitality outfits, gaming arena, entertainment parks, ports and terminals. Marina safari parks, off shore aquariums and sea sports.
- Mobile training institution/ university campus at sea, traveling to remote locations, island settlement and offshore platforms (oil rigs, wind and solar farms etc)
- Millions of new customers especially subscribing for data communication services
- Leaving exclusive military communications aside, operator’s network infrastructure can efficiently &economically meet maritime communication needs of vessels at sea
- A wide range of voice, data and value added services bundle for near coast, regional and global access to individuals, private and public sector organizations
- An avenue for enabling proactive technical and professional support services at sea
- High demand for interactive communication instead of receive only systems
- A unique platform for prime TV content live from passengers and crew onboard cruise liners and fishing/ whale watching trawlers highly attractive for worldwide viewers with huge potential for sponsor advertisements
- A global safety network can be developed by integrating public safety networks, maritime safetynetworks and operator’s network infrastructure thereby enhancing safety of life and assets on landand sea reducing CAPEX and OPEX
There are thousands of vessels always at sea, hundreds of shipping companies, tens of ports & terminals around the world doing business at sea. These numbers will significantly rise as we include worldwide naval fleets, offshore oil rigs and energy platforms at sea. There are people who spend months at sea; there are people who spend weeks at sea; there are people who spend days at sea; there are people who spend hours at sea daily; there are people who spend a lifetime by the sea and people continue to do so because it’s worth it. Indeed It’s worth exploring market potential of maritime industry offering a sea of opportunities.