Marlink has become the latest satcom service provider to partner with Elon Musk’s SpaceX company to deliver Starlink connectivity services to the maritime sector, after the two firms announced a new deal.
Under the agreement, Marlink, and its OmniAccess subsidiary, will act as “authorised Starlink integrators” on a global basis for maritime and enterprise customers. This will allow Marlink to integrate Starlink alongside its existing VSAT, LTE (4G/5G) and terrestrial connectivity systems for onboard installations to create a single central integrated vessel communications network.
“This ability to utilise Starlink is giant step in our strategy to provide our customers with the best-in-class user experience, combining our industry-leading GEO satellite connectivity solutions with the next generation LEO high-speed, low-latency services,” said Erik Ceuppens, CEO, Marlink Group.
“We are looking forward to working with SpaceX to integrate Starlink as part of our smart network solutions, creating a superior global connectivity service for our extensive maritime and enterprise customer base across the world.”
Maritime customers’ potential access to Starlink has expanded rapidly since the company was granted authorisation by the US Federal Communications Commission on 30 June to offer connectivity to ships at sea. SpaceX introduced its maritime service the following week, promising to deliver download speeds of up to 350 Mbps to ships at sea for $5,000 per month, via a pair of antennas delivered for $10,000.
At the end of August, cruise company Royal Caribbean Group announced plans to implement Starlink across its cruise fleet, while Marlink’s satcom service provider competitor Speedcast confirmed that it would be adding the connectivity service to its satellite portfolio for maritime customers earlier this month.
“Adding Starlink to its offerings will bring a new dimension of connectivity to Marlink’s global customer base,” said SpaceX Vice President of Starlink Sales Jonathan Hofeller.
“This low-latency, high-bandwidth broadband experience will allow enterprise and maritime customers to manage their remote businesses more efficiently than ever before.”