Royal Caribbean safeguards guest experience

Company installs fully functioning independent datacentres to ensure guest remain connected through out the entire cruise experience.

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Royal Caribbean safeguards guest experience Bill Martin from Royal Carribbean Cruises says that technology touches every element of the cruise experience.
By  Georgina Enzer Published  May 16, 2013

Company installs fully functioning independent datacentres to ensure guest remain connected through out the entire cruise experience.

Providing the ultimate cruise experience
Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd (Royal Caribbean) is the world’s second largest cruise company with 40 ships currently in service.

Its ships are the largest in the world with the Oasis-class vessels weighing 225,000 tons and carrying 6,000 guests. The company’s cruises take in more than 260 destinations – from Australia and Alaska to Brazil and Bermuda.

Royal Caribbean Cruises ships are renowned for their onboard amenities, which include a rock-climbing wall, ice-skating rink, aquapark and boxing ring. Headquartered in Miami, Florida, the company controls more than a quarter of the world cruise market and operates a number of lines, including Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity Cruises, Asamara Club Cruises, Pullmantur and CDF Croisieres de France, as well as TUI Cruises through a 50 percent joint venture with TUI AG.

Its vision is to empower and enable its employees to deliver the best vacation experience to guests, thereby generating superior returns for shareholders and enhancing the well-being of local communities.

The technology Challenge
Technology plays an increasingly important role in delivering an exceptional experience for guests. From interactive screens that provide ship maps and restaurant menus to facial recognition software that helps guests find their photos, the innovative use of IT provides Royal Caribbean Cruises with a competitive advantage.  Royal Caribbean Cruises not only uses IT to enhance the onboard experience for guests, but also to improve safety. For example, children under the age of 12 are issued wristbands that enable parents to track their location on the ship at any given moment via an iPhone application.

“Our investment in technology has increased dramatically. We no longer talk about technology but about the business services that we want to provide – and the speed at which we can provide them,” said Bill Martin, chief information officer for Royal Caribbean Cruises.

New applications and services at sea
The ability to deliver new applications and services to guests in a short time frame is both a challenge and a differentiator. Royal Caribbean has a number of legacy systems, which can slow down innovation and prevent it from meeting customer expectations.

“The consumerisation of technology means that our guests have increasingly high expectations. They want to be able to connect to the internet wirelessly from their smartphones, tablets, laptops and games consoles the second they board the ship and access a range of applications,” said Martin.

One guest will invariably have multiple devices, which means more traffic traversing the network. To support wireless connectivity for these devices, as well as on-board entertainment and telephony systems, Royal Caribbean’s newer ships include fully converged networks.

“Once you go digital and run everything over IP, you need to have the right monitoring tools in place so you predict and resolve problems before they even happen,” said Martin.

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