Tore Morten Olsen to Robban Assafina: Marlink offers the reliable and secure means to accelerate digitalization
Marlink, the Norwegian expert in fully-managed smart network solutions, is keen to offer its clients the best and most reliable communication services to stay as connected as possible. With the latest service Starlink, Marlink is giving clients and ship owners big opportunities to accelerate their digitalization efforts, and improve ship operations. Robban Assafina’s team met up with Tore Morten Olsen, President at Marlink during the recent Nor-Shipping 2023, to talk more about this.
What can you tell us about Marlink’s participation in Nor-Shipping 2023?
We are very glad to be here; Nor-Shipping is Marlink’s home turf. These events are very important places for us, as they are very valuable spots to meet clients and prospects to talk about market needs.
Tell us more about Marlink’s LEO connectivity services and launches.
We are pushing a lot on what we call the blended service offering, with around 800 Starlink LEO terminals active in the market as well as our well-known VSAT offering. In the same manner, we have to be certain that the services are adequate for ships and users both on a reliable and secure level, using the best means and communication all over.
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What we have found is that the LEO services that have come to the market are very valuable complements to the total communication solution, creating an open internet connectivity onboard, which in turn is reflecting the awareness in security and safety aspects. So we are witnessing a lot of interest in cyber security services as owners realise the challenges they have to manage.
And when assessing which technology to use, the ship and the ship operation must be at the heart of it. You need to have very high reliability services to ensure that operations are taken care of at all times in a safe and secure manner, and making sure that the crew is taking the benefits of the new era.
How do you think will the bandwidth networks reshape ship operations?
Starlink gives the opportunity for ship owners to accelerate their digitalization efforts. The ship can be managed and operated differently, but most importantly; it will help shipping become an attractive place for the younger generation. This will help in staying connected and boost the methods of education and training.
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With the goals aimed at decarbonisation and digitalization, what will owners experience by integrating Starlink into their satellite network?
It all depends on the expectations of the clients. Some expect Starlink to be a revolution that will change everything for them at sea, while others look at it as an incremental value on top of what they’re doing.
The expectations for the latter will be met, since we have tested Starlink on 800 vessels as previously mentioned. We have seen a great performance but that depends on a number of factors such as the location, what applications it’s used for and the requirements for guaranteed bandwidth. So for consumer type services, Starlink will surely give an uplift to the vessel’s operations and perhaps especially crew welfare, but the basics need to be there, providing a secure and sound system at the base.