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Norwegian Cruise Line Joins the Fleet of Cruise Liners to Adopt Starlink Satellite Broadband Service

Norwegian Breakaway. Photo: Norwegian Cruise Line

Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) has announced the start of the trial for Starlink, a satellite broadband service, on one of its ships—the Norwegian Breakaway. NCL plans to potentially deploy the service across eight cruise ships this year. This includes the three new additions to its fleet—Vista, Norwegian Viva, and Seven Seas Grandeur. If the trials are successful, NCL will equip these vessels with Starlink terminals.

In August 2020, Royal Caribbean Group became the first cruise liner to adopt Starlink. This was shortly after SpaceX received the regulatory permission to connect boats, aircraft, and other moving vehicles to its low Earth orbit (LEO) constellation. Since then, SpaceX has been signing up other companies, including Carnival, the world’s largest cruise company with nearly 100 ships.

Starlink provides connectivity to the majority of the Earth’s oceans and seas. Prices for its maritime services start at $1,000 per month and a one-time hardware cost of $2,500 for up to 220 megabits per second download speeds. This has created more competition in a market seen as an important source of growth for satellite operators such as SES, which is currently serving five out of the six major cruise operators. However, some customers are using multiple connectivity providers for redundancy.

By CircleID Reporter

CircleID’s internal staff reporting on news tips and developing stories. Do you have information the professional Internet community should be aware of? Contact us.

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