Elon Musk’s SpaceX secretly installed Starlink internet on Royal Caribbean’s Freedom of the Seas cruise ship last month and since then, passengers have been able to use it freely with their Voom package. Why? The Federal Communications Commission recently approved SpaceX to provide Starlink satellite internet to vehicles in motion, which includes cruise ships.
There are two different Voom internet packages available to cruise passengers on board: Surf and Surf + Stream. The former is basically limited to browsing the web, emails, and basic social media (WhatsApp messaging, etc.), while the latter includes video calls as well as streaming media. Typically, speeds range between 1Mbps – 20Mbps with O3b Networks, but SpaceX Starlink was able to hit 77Mbps. We can only hope Starlink is installed on all modern cruise ships in the near future, but those on the Carnival Mardi Gras can still enjoy the BOLT roller coaster while out at sea.
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Overall, Starlink has blown my cruising Wi-Fi expectations out of the water. While we did notice that the service slowed in our interior room, we were still able to stream shows and use the internet much faster than the typical Voom packages we’ve experienced in the past,” said Nicole Feast, Author at Royal Caribbean Blog.