Tapiit Live transforms seafarer training via Fleet Xpress

30 September 2020: UK maritime training company Tapiit Live has joined Inmarsat’s Certified Application Provider (CAP) programme to offer live stream training to crews on close to 10,000 vessels worldwide connected by our global, high-speed broadband Fleet Xpress service.

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The agreement is designed to transform seafarer training by cutting costs and carbon footprint, and improving standards of teaching. The first live stream training package will be offered on a dedicated 24-hour-a-day basis on demand worldwide without a fluctuating connection.

“We are delighted that Tapiit Live will become a Certified Application Provider for our Fleet Connect dedicated bandwidth solution powered by Fleet Xpress,” said Marco Cristoforo Camporeale, Head of Maritime Digital, Inmarsat Maritime. “This partnership will help improve onboard training tremendously with live streaming and we are excited to be working with an innovative partner that is revolutionising training at sea.”

Classroom style training

Richard Turner CEO at Liverpool-headquartered Tapiit Live said: “This is a hugely exciting moment for seafarer training. Tapiit saw a gap in the market as previously internet costs, with enough bandwidth to enable live streaming, were so high that it was thought live stream classroom style training was 10 years in the future – now we’re delivering it to close to 10,000 ships. Tapiit has done a lot of technical work in the background to compress the file size of the different platforms required for live streaming such as video, recording and PowerPoint.

“As a result, we felt confident to approach Inmarsat with a technically robust product that would work on live stream – as there as so many poor alternatives with some companies attempting training at sea over patchy zoom signals. Inmarsat’s Fleet Connect dedicated bandwidth solution on its Fleet Xpress service alongside Tapiit’s technical expertise offers a training package specially designed by Tapiit and delivered at our studios that can innovate and improve seafarer training fundamentally.

“This is a massive step forward for the industry as nothing beats classroom style learning. While e-learning is effective, live streaming is better as it ensures seafarers who are attending the training can actively engage with the tutor in real time or via private chat.”

Coronavirus crisis

Switching to live stream training strips out massive overheads with up to 80 per cent of normal training costs accounted for by travel, accommodation, expenses and room hire. Interest in the new package among ship operators is also being driven by the coronavirus crisis which has seen classroom training severely disrupted.

“Our initial talks with ship owners, ship management companies and ship registries has shown a massive problem with shore-based training now and into the future because coronavirus,” continues Richard Turner. “There is a real need to adapt training to the new normal of restricted movement and travel and this is a big problem that our deal with Inmarsat solves.

“Seafarers no longer have to travel, they can do a lot of the training while still at sea via desktop, tablet or phone with sessions broadcast from our studios in Liverpool and India as well as studios we are looking to open in America and Singapore. In addition, companies can use this new platform to broadcast company conferences and meetings direct to the ship helping crew become closer to day to day operations on land.”

Mental wellbeing

The first live stream training packages will range from toolbox talks, mental wellbeing, maritime English, risk assessments, security and safety culture.

“The training is best offered on a bespoke basis so we can tailor it to a particular fleet and company’s requirements,” he said. “A very important element will be mental wellbeing. The challenges of life at sea have been brought into sharp focus by the coronavirus crisis and the huge problems around repatriating seafarers particularly to Indian and the Philippines. As a result we have designed three mental wellbeing courses which include support for leaders, crew and also a tailored package for coronavirus related issues.”