Free Wi-Fi introduced for Red Jet customers
27-07-2015 Following successful trials, Red Funnel Isle of Wight Ferries is pleased to announce that it has rolled out a new high capacity Wi-Fi solution across all its vessels and terminals in time for the peak summer season. The system promises improved connectivity and greater bandwidth to cope with a fivefold increase in demand over the past few years.
In addition to Red Funnel’s passenger vehicle ferries, customers using the Red Jet Hi-Speed fleet which serves the company’s Southampton-West Cowes route at speeds of between 36-40 knots will be offered free Wi-Fi for the first time.
Red Funnel was the first cross-Solent operator to introduce Wi-Fi for customers more than 7 years ago but the increase in demand from users of smart devices and signal drop-outs along certain sections of the journey has prompted the company to make a significant investment in a third generation solution which utilises the latest technology.
The new Wi-Fi system supplied by Trellisworks Limited uses carrier class equipment with multiple carrier 3G/4G back-up for seamless failover in areas of poor signal coverage. Compared to traditional point to multipoint systems, both the operating range and the reliability of the ship to shore link has increased significantly through the use of multiple antenna technology and adaptive multipoint access protocols. The number of wireless access points has also been increased significantly on Red Osprey and Red Falcon so that customers can obtain a strong Wi-Fi signal throughout the ship.
Jonathan Green, marketing and communications director said “Following extensive trials, we are delighted to be launching our new onboard Wi-Fi service to coincide with the start of the school holidays. We are particularly pleased to have overcome the technical challenges of providing a robust connection to our Hi-Speed vessels which is a technical first on the Solent and great news for Red Funnel’s 1.1m Red Jet customers”.
Jim Kernahan of Trellisworks commented “Providing resilient connectivity to a large number of people travelling by sea at high speeds has only recently become possible with the latest technology. Even so, considerable thought has gone into the design of the new network infrastructure to ensure that we could confidently deliver the high bandwidth and reliability that Red Funnel and its growing customer base wanted”.
Customers can access the new system from their phone, tablet or laptop at the ferry terminals or onboard by selecting ‘Red Funnel FREE Wi-Fi’ and accepting the terms & conditions of use. The system cleverly manages the bandwidth available to each customer by taking into account the total demand from users to ensure that access to email and low bandwidth services is maintained even at peak times.
For more information and the terms & conditions of use please see www.redfunnel.co.uk/wi-fi