Cruise & Ferry Review - Spring/Summer 2024

127 While sailing on Fjord Line’s vessels, passengers can watch high-quality live TV, movies and series, track the ship’s route or check the daily schedule via cabin TVs, screens in public spaces, or their mobile devices. Fjord Line can guarantee a smooth passenger experience with minimal effort from its onboard team because it uses a modular entertainment-as-a-service solution from Maxicaster, a pioneer in delivering advanced video-centric technology to vessels. “Our onboard-entertainment-asa-service proposition includes all the elements required to launch and maintain a premium onboard entertainment platform including software, hardware and content,” says Andrew Brown, Maxicaster’s chief operating officer. “Customers choose their preferred services, and we manage everything on their behalf.” The holistic nature of the Maxicaster service makes it particularly appealing to ferry and expedition operators, as well as ship management companies who want to offer a premium passenger experience with minimal moving parts or resource requirements. The Maxicaster service has 10 modules including live and catch-up TV, video on demand (VoD), playout channels, info TV for digital signage, mobile extensions and ship trackers. Maxicaster installs one server preloaded with all available modules onto the customer’s ship and activates their chosen services. Installation, commissioning and testing takes approximately three days and can be done in dry dock or during a voyage. Over time, operators can add modules to evolve their onboard entertainment offering in tandem with changing guest demands. “As all modules are preloaded into the Maxicaster server, they can be activated without any operational impact,” says Brown. “The solution is offered as a technical managed service which removes the burden on the operator. In combination with our partner Anuvu, the market-leading connectivity and entertainment provider, we can extend the service to include premium live and VoD content and connectivity solutions. All the modules are simple to use, so crew members require minimal education.” The Maxicaster solution is networkagnostic by design, offering ship operators a ready-made evolution path for their onboard entertainment, while keeping costs low and predictable. “Customers get access to new modules as we release them, without needing to invest in new technologies,” says Brown. “They also know we’re taking care of everything behind the scenes so they can always deliver high-quality entertainment experiences.” Multiple passenger ship operators have already implemented Maxicaster’s solution. “Ship management firm Salén has revolutionised onboard entertainment with playout channels and live and VoD content on two ships,” says Brown. “Meanwhile, Quark Expeditions utilises the service to power an array of curated channels which combine live, VoD and pre-recorded content for cabin TVs and public screens. The possibilities of our costeffective system are almost endless.” The next frontier of entertainment Andrew Brown tells Rebecca Gibson how Maxicaster’s onboardentertainment-as-a-service solution is transforming the way passenger ship operators manage their onboard entertainment INTERVIEW “ The possibilities of our cost-effective system are almost endless” Photo: iStock/CGF Photography