Athens-based Meadway Bulkers Ltd has a fleet of 13 bulkers which are equipped with Fleet Xpress and Infinity. The company has been using Infinity since 2016 and in this article IT manager Konstantinos Kritkos and Stelios Chaidemenakis, Superintendent Engineer, discuss how Navarino’s bandwidth management and optimization tool has made their day to day work more efficient and the functionalities they use.
Mr Kritikos said ‘Infinity has really helped us improve the way we use our onboard connectivity. We use it to control and manage the bandwidth onboard to for example block unwanted traffic on the business network such as YouTube or Facebook to ensure that only business related traffic is enabled, such as ECDIS, email and our PMS.
It also allows us to have a live overview of where each of our vessels are thanks to the vessel tracking feature, which is also really useful. Another Infinity feature that we use a lot is the excellent VOIP calling it offers us between our vessels and office. The cost savings here have been huge and it is a very reliable, high quality alternative to using our landlines’ expensive call rates to satellite terminals.
Besides this, Infinity also has very well developed, convenient tools for managing the way we offer our seafarers access to the internet. Crew welfare is something Meadway Bulkers treats with very high priority and so having a tool like Infinity to ensure we can manage and distribute connectivity to them is extremely important. On the topic of crew welfare, another Navarino service we find really useful is their online portal for ordering crew calling cards, which saves us a lot of time compared to ordering them via email. We can deliver crew calling cards to our Captains within five minutes of receiving their request, and this makes everyone happy – our Captains, crews and us.’
In future we plan to increase the Infinity functionalities we use and to do more remote access to our vessels IT network to help support our vessels and to add new software onboard from shore. We also are considering installing Navarino’s Spectrum service to help us monitor all of our onboard hardware and to keep it updated.’
Mr Chaidemenakis added ‘Infinity has proved an extremely useful tool for us to manage our fleet’s bandwidth. In combination with the fixed fee, unlimited data our vessels enjoy through Fleet Xpress, we are really satisfied with the technology Navarino provides us with. Navarino’s after sales support is also very good and this is critical for a ship operator such as ourselves, who needs reliable, responsive support 24/7.
In most cases we were able to get Fleet Xpress installed and operational within 1 or 2 days, even in difficult to reach locations and whenever we experience any connectivity issues, Navarino support is able to resolve them in a very timely and helpful manner.’
Navarino’s Account Manager for Meadway Bulkers, Ioannis Brougiannakis said ‘We are delighted to partner with Meadway Bulkers , one of Greece’s most advanced ship operators, and I am proud that our technology solutions are able to meet their requirements with the reliability and excellent support that we strive to provide to all of our valued customers.
The demand for innovative solutions and connectivity at sea has grown significantly over the last 2 years due to the Covid-19 pandemic and I am very happy that Meadway Bulkers and its crew members are satisfied. We hope to further expand our cooperation with Meadway Bulkers in the years to come with some of our other advanced solutions, such as Spectrum for asset management and Angel for cybersecurity, as we continue to build on our strong, long lasting partnership.’