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Maritime industry sees increasing demand for data services

With digitalisation gaining traction in the maritime industry as indicated by increasing demand for satellite communication, the use of data services is also rising, according to maritime analytics and AIS company GateHouse Maritime.

According to a report by Trusted Business Insights, the market for maritime satellite communication was valued at $2.64bn in 2018 and is expected to grow with a CAGR of 8.9% from 2019 to 2025.

Joel Box, sales manager at GateHouse Maritime, observed that demand for satellite communication services is partially driven by a growing interest in data, which is critical to the ongoing digital transformation of the maritime industry.

“Data services provide users with unprecedented analytical capabilities. With the right data, shipping companies can, for example, create a comprehensive, operational maritime overview, manage fuel consumption, predict ETAs and cut operational costs while ports can use data to assess risks and improve safety in the port area,” Box said.

“Originally, AIS was used as a collision avoidance tool. Now, the uses of AIS data have expanded and evolved significantly. The general digital transformation has raised the demand for data services that provide instant access to the information that AIS data contains – a demand we believe will only grow stronger in the future,” he added.

Box further explained that at the beginning of the digital transformation, most shipping companies, ports and coastal authorities built their own software systems which involved significant costs in terms of developing, managing, and supporting the applications and data repositories.

But as the industry has matured in terms of digital capability, and the solutions have become more advanced, the maritime industry has gradually turned to software and data service solutions that offer more advanced data analytics, and a higher level of flexibility.

“The next step for many maritime companies is to initiate a wider system integration across the organisations’ software solutions. In this way, the management and distribution of data in a given company’s supply chain can be automated which will significantly increase data efficiency,” Box said.

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