Lack of a really fast and efficient wireless access has been one of the few negative comments of many cruise guests across all of the cruise providers and Royal Caribbean has decided to do something about it.
Over the next 12 to 18 months, they have arranged for upgrade to their systems across 35 ships to give their passengers increased connectivity whilst out at sea. This will allow guests to access the web wherever they are in the ship and adequate bandwidth for email (and of course for the all-important Facebook and other social networking sites). Royal Caribbean’s CEO, Adam Goldstein has seen this as an opportunity for the company:
“Social media has become an overwhelming force in our society today. It is perfect for us. We are in an environment that overwhelmingly satisfies guests. They want to share their experience with others who are not on the ship with them. They want to do that with video, pictures and postcards, things that take bandwidth that has been hard for us to provide up to now”.
However, the new and improved internet will not have the bandwidth will not allow for downloading music or films – not that anyone has time to do this with all the fantastic entertainment options available onboard anyway!
CA Technologies will be in charge of upgrading the systems, and they already have an important role with Royal Caribbean. They currently provide interactive screens for ship maps, restaurant menus and offer face recognition software that lets guests search for any photos they are shown on.
“Guests want wireless access to the internet from their smartphones, tablets, laptops and game consoles the second they board the ship to access a range of services; it’s imperative that we provide them the best possible experience with those services. Our investment in technology has increased dramatically. Thanks to CA Technologies Business Service Innovation approach, we have transitioned our focus from maintaining IT systems to delivering new, innovative guest services with speed and agility.”
— Bill Martin, chief information officer for Royal Caribbean Cruises
There has been extensive development of the IT facilities over the whole of Royal Caribbean International as they realise that their customers expect all their services to run at optimal efficiency, from the first time potential guests check websites for cruise options, the reservation systems, check in and even down to baggage and towel services whilst on board. Mike Sargent, General Manager of Enterprise Management, CA Technologies says:
“We take pride in the important role our solutions play in delivering a differentiating experience for Royal Caribbean customers and look forward to the company’s continued success as it transforms its’ IT systems to meet growing customer demands.”