Inmarsat’s ‘Digital Wave’ Report: Connectivity Vital for Sea-Based Offices

Inmarsat Maritime, a Viasat company, has unveiled its latest publication, “Digital Wave: Transforming vessels into floating offices and remote homes,” delving into the pivotal role of continuous onboard connectivity as ships embrace digitalization. With vessels increasingly resembling floating workplaces, a stable network connection emerges as paramount, optimizing operations and elevating onboard living standards. The ramifications of connectivity disruptions are profound, impacting safety, efficiency, and seafarer well-being.

Crafted by maritime technology research firm Thetius, this report draws on interviews and survey findings to illuminate the current landscape of digital technology adoption among crews and shore-based teams. It spotlights the burgeoning trend of ships transforming into dynamic offices and the consequent demand for seamless, always-available software solutions.

An overwhelming 89% of surveyed seafarers underscored the indispensable nature of connectivity, serving both professional and personal needs. While 11% rely solely on internet access for work, the majority leverage digital tools for an average of five hours daily, with 82% utilizing them for leisure communication. Notably, the report highlights that connectivity disruptions wield a greater impact on leisure activities than on work-related tasks.

Moreover, the report advocates for a unified, collaborative approach to data management, hinging on five key pillars: a standardized data framework, effortless connectivity catering to operational and crew welfare needs, robust security protocols, globally endorsed systems, and a culture of data sharing.

By rallying stakeholders—including ship owners, operators, charterers, and regulatory bodies—to champion and oversee data utilization, a cohesive strategy emerges, bolstering centralized data management, fostering innovation and adaptability, promoting safety protocols, and curbing operational expenses.

Ben Palmer, President of Inmarsat Maritime, emphasized the indispensable nature of fast, reliable connectivity, spanning global territories, including remote and high-traffic zones. Inmarsat reaffirms its commitment to fortifying vessel operations and crew welfare, offering the certainty and reliability expected by maritime and offshore enterprises.

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