Which System?

When you start looking at Internet at Sea Systems the most common questions asked are:-

  • What system should I choose?
  • What is best for me?
  • What is the cheapest system?
  • What are the airtime costs?

Before any of these questions can be answered, there are more questions to answer, you will be asked.

  • What type of vessel do you have?
  • What is the size of the vessel?
  • Where in the world will you be sailing?
  • Do you require occasional use for emails only?
  • Do you require average Internet connection with limited usage?
  • Do you require constant Internet connection with average use?
  • Do you require constant Internet connection with unlimited use?
  • Do you require Telephone via the Internet VOIP, if yes how many telephone lines?
  • How many people will be using the Internet system?
  • What restrictions will there be
    • No Restriction
    • Large emails, downloading music & images and surfing the internet
    • Small emails only and surfing the net
    • Highly restricted use small email only
  • Where is the vessel most of the time when Internet is required?
    • In a Marina or Port
    • At Anchor close to a Port
    • At Sea Coastal areas
    • At Sea away from Coastal Areas
    • At Deep Sea

Other questions to ask are:-

  • Do you have satellite TV if yes what make, model and what satellites do you watch, some Internet systems can download using the satellite TV antenna and upload via Fleet Broadband or VSAT, available in Europe only on 1W.
  • And of course is there any space on the vessel to fit the antenna etc

Below are some of the choices you have

Internet / Connection Internet Speed Coverage at Sea Equipment Price Range Internet data usage cost per MB Airtime
ASDL 56k None Low Low Local Landline
GPRS & 3G 28k – 1M Near Coast Low Up to £6 Mobile Telephone
WIFI Up to 56M Marina Low Marina/Port
Fleet 150 Phone and Data
150/150 kbps
World Coverage £5,250 – £5,500 £13.00 Price available on request
Fleet 250 Phone and Data
284/284 kbps
World Coverage £8,500 – £10,000 £13.00 Price available on request
Fleet 500 Phone and Data
432/432 kbps
World Coverage £14,500 – £16,000 £13.00 Price available on request
KVH V3
Mini VSAT
Up to 2M download Centre of KU footprints £12,000 – £13,000 Monthly Contract Price available on request
KVH V7
Mini VSAT
Up to 2M download Centre of KU footprints £25,000 – £27,000 Monthly Contract Price available on request
SeaTel
Mini VSAT
Up to 2M download Centre of KU footprints £24,000 – £30,000 Monthly Contract Price available on request
KU Band
VSAT
Up to 4M download KU footprints £45,000 – £70,000 Monthly Contract Price available on request
KU Band
VSAT
Up to 20M download KU footprints £60,000 – £80,000 Monthly Contract Price available on request
KU & C Band
TX / RX
Up to 4M download KU & C band footprints World Coverage £60,000 – £149,000 Monthly Contract Price available on request
KU & C Band
TX / RX
Up to 20M download C band footprints World Coverage £70,000 – £159,000 Monthly Contract Price available on request

NB Addition costs for Modem and VOIP Depending on service required

The VSAT option may at first may look the most expensive as the antenna is the dearest, but if they use the internet as normal uses then with the airtime it becomes the overall cheapest system. Available in Contention rates of 10:1, 6:1, 3:1 and Dedicated rate of 1:1

The fleet broadband is the cheapest to purchase but the airtime is by the minute and can be the most expensive to use, on larger yachts these would be used for backup phone and internet.

The Mini VSAT is a small VSAT system speeds slightly slower than VSAT, ideal for ocational to light internet usage.

The large C band antennas are for large ocean going vessels that require high usage Phones and Internet worldwide

There is also Hybrid options were download is via the satellite TV antenna Monthly in Europe on Thor 1W and upload is via any of the above systems.