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Superior Wi-Fi options

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I am not sure if this has been discussed already (apologies if it has), but it appears BF are trialling/introducing a "premium Wi-Fi" option which you can choose on the Cap.

http://www.brittany-ferries.co.uk/fleet/onboard/wi-fi#capfinistere 

Looks interesting. The data allowances clearly will not allow streaming still really, but I wonder what the QOS / speed is like compared to the Free offering? Has anyone tried this yet?

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2 hours ago, hf_uk said:

I am not sure if this has been discussed already (apologies if it has), but it appears BF are trialling/introducing a "premium Wi-Fi" option which you can choose on the Cap.

http://www.brittany-ferries.co.uk/fleet/onboard/wi-fi#capfinistere 

Looks interesting. The data allowances clearly will not allow streaming still really, but I wonder what the QOS / speed is like compared to the Free offering? Has anyone tried this yet?

Don't think anyone has tried it yet - the page says it's from 26th April. It's nice to see decent WiFi being offered... thus far working during a crossing (or at least appearing online) has never seemed like a possibility. That said, the limits seem relatively small - particularly on devices that have updates set to download automatically or backup photos etc. Pretty sure that if I connected my phone or laptop on a Level 2 package it would last only a few minutes. 

Combined with the Cap's longer crossings, I can't say I'm too impressed!

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I agree, but for the time onboard, if the speed was significantly better I would be happy to pay £12 or whatever for a decent experience of just general / light browsing. You would just have to be careful and turn off updates etc....

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Be nice if wifi was available outdoors as well, I am sure it is on some ships, not talking about BF ones though, think I have heard about wifi outdoors.

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Well this appears to be an installation of new kit so I am sure if it reaches all public parts of the ship inside now then it will go outside too. Would be nice to surf at that newly renovated salad bar thing outside!

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18 hours ago, hf_uk said:

I agree, but for the time onboard, if the speed was significantly better I would be happy to pay £12 or whatever for a decent experience of just general / light browsing. You would just have to be careful and turn off updates etc....

True - but assuming it was a decent enough speed it could eat through the Level 2 allowance in the time it takes to disable everything. I'd much rather pay for something time-based with no limit on data (accepting no streaming etc etc).

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2 hours ago, Jim said:

True - but assuming it was a decent enough speed it could eat through the Level 2 allowance in the time it takes to disable everything. I'd much rather pay for something time-based with no limit on data (accepting no streaming etc etc).

I'm not an IT expert but if you have that much running in the background that needs disabling perhaps you need to look at what is running.  I think this all comes from the unlimited packages that people have, no one has to think about usage, if you want to open or view something you just do it.  When travelling all I want is to check e-mails, check a few websites such as BFE and Facebook, no viewing videos etc.

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3 hours ago, Jim said:

True - but assuming it was a decent enough speed it could eat through the Level 2 allowance in the time it takes to disable everything. I'd much rather pay for something time-based with no limit on data (accepting no streaming etc etc).

I agree Jim, but I can't see it happening... BF do not have Royal Carribean's pockets! I understand some users perhaps may have a few issues, but for business or more technical travelers you could surely just create a profile for travelling, or disable all services before connecting to the service? I imagine they want this service to remain for the minority of users who are willing to pay because they have a requirement for faster speeds, not just casual browsing. 24 hours on a ship is a long time to be potentially disconnected from working. You could easily connect to low-bandwidth services and work on Office docs via your VPN or on your Google drive or NAS or whatever. I think it is a big plus - compared to the cost of internet access on a long-haul flight for example, and the crossing is two or three times longer and the Tuesday Bilbao arrival is even worse (possibly why they picked the CF for this trial). 'Big data' aside though, the reliability of the connection could crucially be the difference between a day or day and half of lost productivity. Another thing to consider is how they have allocated the bandwidth, or if it is a totally separate service. If the majority of users signed up for the pay service, would it then degrade, leaving the free service much faster? (one would hope not). 

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4 hours ago, Solo said:

I'm not an IT expert but if you have that much running in the background that needs disabling perhaps you need to look at what is running.  I think this all comes from the unlimited packages that people have, no one has to think about usage, if you want to open or view something you just do it.  When travelling all I want is to check e-mails, check a few websites such as BFE and Facebook, no viewing videos etc.

Phone just backs up photos and is configured to update apps on WiFi connections... many apps would allow easy disabling of such things over mobile connections, but sometimes disabling via WiFi isn't an option. My point being that if people didn't do such disabling then the 20 MB allowance on the lower level could be swallowed by around 5 photos or the update of a single app.


Work laptop usage in itself isn't intensive in terms of general data... but it is configured to meet certain security standards including having patches pushed out to it from a central server. To remain compliant, that feature can't be disabled and so again, hypothetically, it could eat the smaller allowance or a chunk of the larger ones.

Overall, that's why I'd prefer a time-bound option personally and would even accept moderate speed limits with it on the provision it was more reliable than the current free offering (and perhaps meant the odd 'remote working' day could be performed in the middle of the channel ;) )

4 hours ago, hf_uk said:

I agree Jim, but I can't see it happening... BF do not have Royal Carribean's pockets! I understand some users perhaps may have a few issues, but for business or more technical travelers you could surely just create a profile for travelling, or disable all services before connecting to the service? I imagine they want this service to remain for the minority of users who are willing to pay because they have a requirement for faster speeds, not just casual browsing. 24 hours on a ship is a long time to be potentially disconnected from working. You could easily connect to low-bandwidth services and work on Office docs via your VPN or on your Google drive or NAS or whatever. I think it is a big plus - compared to the cost of internet access on a long-haul flight for example, and the crossing is two or three times longer and the Tuesday Bilbao arrival is even worse (possibly why they picked the CF for this trial). 'Big data' aside though, the reliability of the connection could crucially be the difference between a day or day and half of lost productivity. Another thing to consider is how they have allocated the bandwidth, or if it is a totally separate service. If the majority of users signed up for the pay service, would it then degrade, leaving the free service much faster? (one would hope not). 

Understand what you're saying hf_uk - and can see the logic in it. Presumably BF would also get charged by bandwidth too, hence doing it by data and not time. Interesting comparison to airlines though who are increasingly providing it free. I managed to get 30 megabit bandwidth at 28,000 feet with Norwegian a couple of years ago at no extra cost. Don't get me wrong, I think this is a good move by BF to offer something new, I'm just being picky ;)

P.S. Having seen RCI's internet charges last year... sheeesh!

 

 

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I have seen on BF Twitter that some people are being caught out by roaming charges while onboard - they are saying that, having left their phones switched in while sleeping, they then find that activity has resulted in them receiving a huge bill.....BF seem to be saying that some providers are automatically setting roaming to "on" - I have never heard of this.....it is actually very simple to set Data to off while roaming, I always do this and as long as you do not make or receive any calls while onboard then there will be no expensive surprises.......just something for people to be aware of though.

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42 minutes ago, Jim said:

Phone just backs up photos and is configured to update apps on WiFi connections... many apps would allow easy disabling of such things over mobile connections, but sometimes disabling via WiFi isn't an option. My point being that if people didn't do such disabling then the 20 MB allowance on the lower level could be swallowed by around 5 photos or the update of a single app.


Work laptop usage in itself isn't intensive in terms of general data... but it is configured to meet certain security standards including having patches pushed out to it from a central server. To remain compliant, that feature can't be disabled and so again, hypothetically, it could eat the smaller allowance or a chunk of the larger ones.

Overall, that's why I'd prefer a time-bound option personally and would even accept moderate speed limits with it on the provision it was more reliable than the current free offering (and perhaps meant the odd 'remote working' day could be performed in the middle of the channel ;) )

Understand what you're saying hf_uk - and can see the logic in it. Presumably BF would also get charged by bandwidth too, hence doing it by data and not time. Interesting comparison to airlines though who are increasingly providing it free. I managed to get 30 megabit bandwidth at 28,000 feet with Norwegian a couple of years ago at no extra cost. Don't get me wrong, I think this is a good move by BF to offer something new, I'm just being picky ;)

P.S. Having seen RCI's internet charges last year... sheeesh!

 

 

Interesting about the airlines Jim -that shows several things. Norwegian were among the first to really push it I understand. And... I clearly don't go on enough flights these days, and if I do they are RyanAir (who certainly DON'T) do it:( ha. I would be interested actually, in how many carriers now provide it free in economy on a long haul, vs just business and first ? I saw a recent survey saying that the average cost for US passengers was about £8 per hour whilst in the air. So arguably faster than BF, but then again, at that rate on the longer Bilbao crossing we are talking about £260!! (32.5hours) :)

 

RCCL have to cover the £20m cost tneeded to chuck three dedicated satellites into orbit just to serve the Quantum class @ 500mbit don't forget ;-) thre

Edited by hf_uk

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I have heard Condor apparently got better wifi now, when went on Libby, it worked while at the ports but not out at sea.  About time too.  Apologies for bringing Condor into the thread and going off topic slightly, but worth mentioning as it is about time their wifi was brought up to date.

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I would imagine Condor have significantly lower costs as they will likely use a hybrid handover system, utilizing French and UK mobile networks some way out into the channel and then handing over to a sattelite for the expensive "mid-sea" uncovered part of the journey. Their route network has much closer proximity to land, especially with the channel islands also. BF cannot do this with their longer and more disparate routes, especially to Spain. I beleive this method is also popular among cruise operators in the Carribean islands now...

 

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The improved wi-fi options continue to be rolled out across the fleet, and will be available on the Pont-Aven from the 5th Feb:

WiFi.JPG.4d3a484806bf9819913f3a4061c196e4.JPG

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2 hours ago, Andy said:

The improved wi-fi options continue to be rolled out across the fleet, and will be available on the Pont-Aven from the 5th Feb:

WiFi.JPG.4d3a484806bf9819913f3a4061c196e4.JPG

Since we use Cap on our annual trip to Spain where we can this fills the odd journey where Pont fits our schedule. Have found level 3 fills our need very well for the 24 hrs. Also that unused allowance is lost next time so higher level 4 would not benefit us.

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It will be interesting to see what Wi-Fi provision will be available Connemara when we use her in July. At the moment NA seems to have availability in public areas not cabins.

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14 minutes ago, neilcvx said:

There are certain cabins on the Pont where you can get free wifi 😉

I always try our allocated cabins before purchasing our voucher.  Best I have managed was a couch in the stairwell just outside our cabin on the Cap.  Do you know the cabin numbers we usually get 8036 on the Cap no luck there!

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The ones just behind the information desk usually work 6230,6268 etc bearing in mind it's the free wifi it's usually not too great I might try one of the paid wifi options if it's choppy and I'm not in the bar.

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The last time I was travelling alone on Bretagne I has cabin 8300 and the wifi was fine as it's the closest to the designated zone. I would guess any of the 3 or 4 cabins near the café area would be able to pick it up but it may well depend on the equipment you are using too. Ed

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1 hour ago, neilcvx said:

The ones just behind the information desk usually work 6230,6268 etc bearing in mind it's the free wifi it's usually not too great I might try one of the paid wifi options if it's choppy and I'm not in the bar.

Don't tell everyone Neil, we have had one of these cabins going to Spain, nice bonus.

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Very much doubt it.  Unless it is close enough to the lounge to pick up the lounge signal, which is possible.  It is nowhere near any of the other public areas.

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DFDS have just brought in something like this, but I think they also removed the free wifi in cabins, and replaced it with a 'Pay4Play' type model... I don't see why this is needed for any operator, given in most places, wifi is a necessity rather than a nice thing to have now days 

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