Wireless Maritime Services (WMS) has been chosen as the winner of the 2021 Seatrade Cruise Product of the Year Award for advances made in cruise ship wireless networks. WMS has accomplished an industry-first deploying the most 4G LTE cellular networks across their fleet of 160+ cruise ships. This advancement provides guests and crew members faster data connection speeds at sea using WMS' Cellular at Sea service from their mobile devices.
Pramod Arora, President & CEO for WMS said, “We take pride in the investments we have made in our network over several years to differentiate WMS from our competition, and our employees have executed to deliver this technology to our cruise customers better than anyone else in the industry. This award is an acknowledgement of our commitment to provide the best network on cruise ships, and to the hard work of WMS team.”
Ian McGhie, Vice President of Engineering and Operations for WMS added, "We are extremely honored to be chosen by our cruise industry peers for this highly-coveted award. These advances create efficiencies and positions cruise lines for future capabilities while simultaneously improving the passenger experience. Specifically, 4G LTE uses less satellite bandwidth, improves data speeds, utilizes less space onboard and is future-ready for 5G."
Deploying a More Efficient Wireless Network
LTE is built specifically to support data versus 2G/3G technologies that were adapted to support data. This crucial change in design greatly improves how data packets handle transmissions from a device, through the LTE network, over satellite and back to Earth. In summary, LTE tolerates satellite interference better and continues to deliver data when the connection quality is not ideal. The new LTE components are also more compact than legacy 2G and 3G equipment allowing for an easier path to upgrade in the tight shipboard real estate environment while maintaining power needed for vessel wireless coverage.
Improving Guest and Crew Onboard Connectivity
For passengers, LTE is a faster, stronger and more reliable connection. LTE improved data speeds are similar at sea, which passengers have become accustomed to at home, versus 2G and 3G systems. Guests access mobile services on their devices quicker enabling them to share their cruise experience via social media and messaging apps.
Investing in the Future of Maritime Communication at Sea
WMS’ deployment of 4G LTE is future-ready for the next generation of cellular – 5G. The 4G LTE hardware that has been installed onboard WMS' ships can be upgraded to 5G with software without the need to remove, modify or add additional hardware to take onboard connectivity into the future.