Wightlink Isle of Wight Ferries, which serve communities in the south of England, will be deploying Moovera's Wi-Fi solution on board its ferries, a WiFiPlanet report, said. Initially the service will provide in-ship broadband for the crew only, not to the 5.5 million passengers the ferries carry each year.
Andrew Willson, Wightlink's CEO, said his company is 'laying the foundation for public WiFi hotspot services.' Wightlink has equipped ferries running between the Isle of Wight and the mainland towns of Portsmouth and Lymington with the Moovbox M Series mobile broadband gateway, which provides broadband Wi-Fi access and real-time GPS-based ship location monitoring.
The implementation of on-board Internet is part of an ongoing modernisation programme undertaken by the Wightlink line that includes the commissioning of three new ships. With eight car ferries in the fleet, Wightlink carries 1.2 million cars, and almost 200,000 coaches and freight vehicles each year.
The Moovbox M Series will provide the ships with Internet access at speeds up to 3.6 Mbps by creating a bridge between a vessel and a 3G HSPA cellular broadband network from T-Mobile. The Moovbox offers Ethernet connectivity for ship systems, secure WiFi for crew laptops, and includes built-in GPS for real-time fleet tracking.