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350 Mbps VSAT service signs first customer

The recently announced O3bMaritime VSAT service, set to be launched in 2013 and promising download speeds of 350 Mbps to ships at sea, has signed its first customer, with the agreement of a multi-year, multi-million dollar contract with Royal Caribbean Cruises.

The deal will see O3b Networks deliver high-speed satellite broadband services to the 8,000 guests, staff and crew members aboard the world’s largest cruise ship, Oasis of the Seas, by summer 2013.

Oasis of the Seas will be the first ship installed with the service.

“With O3b Maritime, Oasis of the Seas will experience connection speeds that are an order of magnitude higher and latency that is four times lower than offered in the market today,” said Steve Collar, CEO, O3b Networks.

“At O3b, we believe that affordable, high speed broadband should always be within reach – wherever you are in the world, on land and at sea - and we are delighted to showcase the unrivalled performance of O3b Maritime together with Royal Caribbean.”

The O3b system will operate using an eight-satellite medium Earth orbit network, offering Ka-band service between +/- 45 degrees.

Unusually, the service dedicates a single beam to a ship, which moves around, tracking the ship during its voyage. This dedicated beam will allow O3b to offer bandwidth speeds far exceeding anything available today, the company says.

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