Connexion by Boeing today announced initial pricing and details for its new high-speed Internet service for the maritime market, scheduled for commercial availability this fall. The Connexion by Boeing service is available today on flights offered by Lufthansa, SAS, Japan Airlines, ANA and Singapore Airlines. In addition, China Airlines, El Al, Korean Air and Asiana have announced their intent to install the Connexion by Boeing system on their long-range aircraft.
“Our Connexion by Boeing maritime service marks a revolutionary change in the way shipping operators can access high-speed Internet, corporate intranets, e-mail and other offerings while at sea,” said Sean Schwinn, vice president of maritime service for Connexion by Boeing. “Today, many operators work hard to minimize communication, given the cost. By making truly office-like communications available on a global basis at affordable rates, we think our service brings a much needed choice to the maritime market,” Schwinn added.
The commercial maritime market is accustomed to “on-demand” offerings ( where users are charged by the minute ) and “always-on” offerings ( where users are charged by the megabyte ). Today, Connexion by Boeing provided the details of its “on-demand” service, bringing a new, high-value global maritime communications choice to commercial shipping companies and other maritime customers. Details regarding “always-on” pricing will be released at a later date.
For a monthly fee of $2,800 USD per vessel, Connexion by Boeing will provide the terminal equipment necessary to access its full suite of communications capabilities, including high-speed data, voice and fax services, television programming and an innovative fleet-sharing program that allows a customer to share unused system minutes among all vessels within its fleet. Specifically, the on-demand service package includes:
High-Speed Data Services: All vessels in a customer’s fleet may share up to 2,000 minutes of data connectivity per vessel per month. Vessels will receive data on Connexion by Boeing’s 5+ Mbps forward link, and will send data at up to 256 Kbps, enabling multiple simultaneous data and voice sessions. Additional minutes will cost $1.25 USD per minute.
Voice/Fax Services: All vessels in a customer’s fleet may share up to 100 minutes of send or receive voice/fax calls per vessel per month using equipment provided by Connexion by Boeing. Additional voice/fax minutes will be charged at $1.25 USD per minute.
Connexion Television: Beginning in 2006, all vessels in a customer’s fleet will be able to receive up to four channels of television content, which may be viewed 24 hours per day/7 days per week, at no extra charge.
Management Tools: The connectivity usage for all vessels in a customer’s fleet will be tracked and reported daily on a secure, Web-based portal to enable fleet masters and owners to see and manage usage and expenses quickly and efficiently.
Fleet-Sharing Program: All vessels within a customer’s fleet will be able to share the monthly data and voice/fax minutes. This will allow vessels with less monthly usage to offset the potential expenses of vessels with higher usage times. This will also help ensure communications costs are predictable.
The service will become commercially available this fall. By 2006, Connexion by Boeing’s maritime service is expected to cover shipping vessels an estimated 99 percent of the time while those vessels are at sea.