01 February 2018: Inmarsat Fleet Xpress Value Added Reseller (VAR) Marlink has launched a prepaid voice card calling facility, giving seafarers a low-cost and easy-to-manage way to call family and friends ashore.
The prepaid offering – the first to be introduced for Fleet Xpress – is available through Marlink’s established Universal Card, Universal Card Go and Prepaid Talk products.
Simplifying the process for both ship owners and end-users, all prepaid minutes on Marlink’s standard calling cards can be used on either the Ka-band Global Xpress (GX) or back-up L-band FleetBroadband elements of the Fleet Xpress service. The same prepaid minutes can also be used on other Marlink services, so regardless of the connectivity service available, seafarers need just one card to make calls to both terrestrial and mobile numbers.
“We are removing the cost uncertainty of calling home and allowing ship owners to provide easy access to reliable, premium quality voice calling on a global basis by bringing Fleet Xpress into our existing prepaid solutions,” said Tore Morten Olsen, President Maritime, Marlink.
“Our latest development for Fleet Xpress confirms our focus to provide the smartest solutions regardless of connectivity, including our ability to offer an exclusive portfolio of powerful business-critical and administration solutions to end-users that choose Fleet Xpress through Marlink.”
Marlink was early to fully integrate Fleet Xpress into its global network by establishing interconnection at all three ‘meet me’ points, one for each GX region. This enables the VAR to make its portfolio of value added solutions available to Fleet Xpress users, and to deliver an extra Quality of Service (QoS) layer through user-defined traffic prioritising, which ensures bandwidth is always available for the most important applications.
The service provider can also proactively report on the status of Fleet Xpress voice and data services in addition to showing when and why a vessel is not operating on the primary GX bearer. Giving access to reports including traffic statistics, real-time position of vessels, sailing routes, SNR stats, and networks and satellite beams currently being used, ensures higher uptime and a faster response for troubleshooting.
Marlink continues to develop its monitoring and reporting tools for Fleet Xpress, and will release more solutions designed to deliver operational continuity during 2018.