“Se@MeNow has been designed to connect seafarers at sea with their families and loved ones on shore, as well as being a connecting point with their corporate headquarters,” says Jan Andre’ Heggem, managing director of SMSGlobal.
The portal works as a virtual meeting place where seafarers can communicate with their loved ones via wall updates, by sharing photos or music, or through video chat. SMSGlobal says that the video chat feature is optimised to work with the inherent limitations of maritime broadband and requires only 35 kbps bandwidth.
Se@MeNow also functions as the web mail service for SMSGlobal subscribers using the CrewCommCenter system. There are currently 3,200 deep-sea vessels equipped with CrewCommCenter, enabling crew to send and receive e-mails and SMS, read ship manager announcements and news from home, converse through low data instant messaging, and browse the internet. SMSGlobal says that 125,000 seafarers exchange 2,250,000 messages monthly with over 1,300,000 friends and loved ones on shore using the service.
When these seafarers are on shore-leave, or on a vessel that has an internet connection but no CrewCommCenter, they can login with their CrewCommCenter ID and password to access Se@MeNow.