Groundbreaking Ku-band mobile broadband satellite communications network expanding worldwide; more than 500 TracPhone V7 systems shipped
MIDDLETOWN, R.I., Oct. 26 -- Two years ago this month, a remarkable new solution for maritime two-way satellite communications launched its live operations for commercial and leisure mariners. With true broadband speeds, significant cost savings, and complete integration with the world's first 24-inch diameter marine VSAT antenna, the mini-VSAT Broadbandsm network from KVH Industries, Inc., (Nasdaq: KVHI) is rapidly becoming the day-to-day communication solution for vessels worldwide.
Among the first people to add the TracPhone® V7 and the mini-VSAT Broadband service to his vessel was Robert Stein, president of VIP Yachts and owner of the 130 ft motor yacht Sojourn. Two years later, he and his crew continue to enjoy the benefits. "The TracPhone V7 and mini-VSAT Broadband have been a great improvement over our prior service. They offer a great crew benefit, because our crew can use the Internet and voice services to stay in touch with their loved ones," Stein explained.
"We are extremely excited to mark the two-year anniversary of the mini-VSAT Broadband network and thank customers like Mr. Stein and the hundreds of mariners and ship operators who are helping to make mini-VSAT Broadband among the fastest growing maritime communications solutions available," said Martin Kits van Heyningen, KVH's president and chief executive officer. "Together with ViaSat, we set out to offer maritime, aeronautical, and other mobile customers an entirely new approach to broadband service on the move. Our fully integrated solution offers compelling advantages that vessel owners appreciate, which is why we've managed to become one of the world's top maritime VSAT service providers in only two years."
The mini-VSAT Broadband service, along with the KVH TracPhone V7 antenna, comprise the first end-to-end 24-inch VSAT hardware, service, and support package available for maritime communications. Together, KVH and ViaSat are offering voice service and Internet access as fast as 512 Kbps (upload) and 2 Mbps (download) at fixed monthly rates to mariners as well as network coverage to the ViaSat Yondersm mobile broadband service, and others who want to stay connected with high-speed mobile networking.
Among the latest to make the move to mini-VSAT Broadband is Clipper Group. Explaining why they made the change, Michael Mark, Clipper's vessel IT manager, said, "We chose the TracPhone V7 antenna and mini-VSAT Broadband service for their ability to provide affordable voice calls, intranet capabilities, and crew services. We are utilizing the system for remote support as well, which in the long run will result in significant savings ... Over time, we will save a lot on support resources, since most support functions can be performed remotely with the TracPhone V7. We recently reinstalled a communication computer onboard, through which all of our main software is installed remotely by staff on shore. We expect that we will save a significant amount on travel as we implement this remote process."
Major Milestones During mini-VSAT Broadband's First Two Years
- Operating a fully integrated hardware, network, and service solution that is the first to offer a 24-inch VSAT antenna and ViaSat's patented ArcLight® spread spectrum technology
- Supplying broadband and voice service with every key maritime region operational or under contract, with the exception of South America, satellite coverage for which is currently in development
- Managing a network currently supported by seven secure earth stations around the globe, together with seven of the world's most powerful communications satellites
- Shipped more than 500 TracPhone V7s for use on vessels worldwide, representing almost 10% of the installed base of maritime VSAT system based on estimates in the "2008 Maritime VSAT Markets Report" published by COMSYS
- Offering vessels operators a convenient and affordable means of strengthening crew morale by offering an integrated crew calling option
- Adding the versatility of GSM cell phones to maritime operations through a new agreement with On-Waves to offer picocell technology compatible with mini-VSAT Broadband for use on commercial and leisure vessels
Visit http://www.minivsat.com for additional details regarding the TracPhone V7 and mini-VSAT Broadband service along with maps illustrating the current and planned coverage for mini-VSAT Broadband service.
About KVH Industries, Inc.
Middletown, RI-based KVH Industries, Inc., and its wholly owned subsidiary, KVH Europe A/S, are leading providers of in-motion satellite TV and communications systems, having designed, manufactured, and sold more than 150,000 mobile satellite antennas for applications on vessels, vehicles, and aircraft. KVH's mission is to connect mobile customers around the globe with the same digital television entertainment, communications, and Internet services that they enjoy in their homes.
This release contains forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. Forward-looking statements include, for example, the service rollout plans, the functionality, characteristics, quality and performance of KVH's products and technology; anticipated innovation and product development; and customer demand, preferences, requirements and expectations. The actual results could differ materially. Factors that may cause such differences include, among others, the successful launch and deployment of new satellites; uncertainty about the scope of customer demand; the potential inability to secure the licenses necessary for the network; risks associated with the delivery or performance of critical hardware; changes in the costs and capabilities of competing offerings; and those other risk factors discussed in KVH's most recent Form 10-Q filed with the SEC. KVH does not assume any obligation to update its forward-looking statements to reflect new information or developments.
KVH and TracPhone are registered trademarks of KVH Industries. "mini-VSAT Broadband" is a service mark of KVH Industries. All other trademarks are the property of their respective companies.