KVH's TracPhone communications technology (Photo courtesy of KVH)

KVH Ships its 5,000th TracPhone System


KVH Industries, Inc. shipped its 5,000th TracPhone satellite communications antenna system for the mini-VSAT Broadband network, the company announced today. The company said it shipped more than 1,000 units in the past year.

The company's TracPhone antenna systems and global mini-VSAT Broadband network constitute an end-to-end solution for maritime satellite communications, providing connectivity to tankers, containerships, fishing fleets, offshore supply vessels, government patrol cutters, and luxury yachts.

"Our solution has been widely adopted because it brings simplicity and value to ship owners, IT fleet managers, and vessel captains operating global vessels in a highly competitive environment," said Martin Kits van Heyningen, KVH's chief executive officer. "When we entered the market, accessing the Internet at sea was ridiculously expensive, either due to extremely high airtime rates or the need for complex, expensive onboard equipment that was difficult to install and maintain."

In 2012, five years after being introduced, the mini-VSAT Broadband service became the maritime VSAT market share leader according to market research reports, a position that has been repeatedly re-confirmed in report updates.

KVH's advanced TracPhone antenna systems include the TracPhone V11-IP, a 1.1 meter diameter, dual-mode C/Ku-band antenna for global VSAT connectivity; the TracPhone V7-IP, a 60 cm diameter enterprise-grade antenna for Ku-band service worldwide; and the TracPhone V3-IP, a 37 cm diameter Ku-band antenna that is the world's most compact maritime VSAT antenna. All three TracPhone V-IP systems feature the Integrated CommBox Modem (ICM), a streamlined belowdecks unit that replaces the need for a rack full of components and integrates all antenna control, onboard network management, and modem functions in one small box. The compact antenna hardware makes installation faster and less expensive, and gives worldwide fleets the ability to efficiently install the KVH system with minimal idle time for their vessels.

"Operating our own network provides us with unique opportunities to offer creative solutions to our customers' problems," said Kits van Heyningen. "For example, delivering large files such as movies, music, and TV shows, or digital charts and training videos used to cost thousands if not tens of thousands of dollars over competing satellite networks, if allowed at all. We invented a new service called IP-MobileCast that actually broadcasts large files to all of our customers at once, which is so efficient we don't charge for the content's delivery. Instead, fleets subscribe to the news, entertainment, and sports content that they want."

Prior to launching the IP-MobileCast content delivery service last year, KVH developed the multicasting technology to make it feasible and also acquired a company to produce, procure, and license content for the maritime market. KVH Media Group produces daily digital newspapers under the NEWSlink brand, licenses award-winning new-release Hollywood movies and TV programs under the MOVIElink and TVlink brands, provides sports highlights and video clips from around the world under the SPORTSlink brand, and develops digital music channels under the MUSIClink brand. This content is available via IP-MobileCast subscription packages.