nicko cruises, a major provider of river cruises in Europe, has signed a five-year contract with Deutsche Telekom and Purple to deliver WiFi to its passengers. nicko’s cruise ships offer 4- to 5-star service and operate in more than twenty countries on scenic rivers and coastal sections.

European telecommunications provider, Deutsche Telekom, entered discussions with nicko cruises in October of last year to deliberate suitable options for their new onboard WiFi. The cruise operator was keen to implement an easy to access guest WiFi solution that is suitable for their core customer demographic, which on average is aged 60 years plus. The ability to restrict data usage was also important due to the threat of high roaming charges when the ships enter different countries.

Cisco Meraki wireless technology was deemed a suitable fit for the project but with this solution alone nicko cruises had no way of limiting data use. To resolve this issue Purple was introduced to the negotiations so that they could limit each customer to just 200-500 MB of data. With Purple’s WiFi and analytics solution the brand could also deliver simplistic login to users whilst capturing insights on usage levels, visitor location, gender, age, login method and time spent on the network.

Steffen Hübner, an IT Consultant for Deutsche Telekom, said: “Following a lengthy period of discussions with nicko cruises I’m delighted that we can finally deliver a solution that meets all of their core requirements and is also great in terms of price. I can honestly say that if it wasn’t for Purple then the contract with nicko cruises would not have been signed.”

Purple and Cisco Meraki access points have been installed on seven of the companies ships and if this rollout is deemed successful then the solution will be installed on more nicko vessels. Connectivity is now available in the lobby and bar areas of each ship, allowing travellers to access the internet, send or upload pictures and communicate with friends and family throughout their holiday.

Andreas Grasberger, Head of IT and Data Management at nicko cruises said: “Our intention was to create an easily accessible and cost-efficient WiFi solution for our guests. Because of the roaming issues when travelling through multiple EU and non-EU countries, our major requirement was to be able to restrict data usage. An additional requirement was to be able to manage all the devices and networks centrally from our Head Office in Stuttgart. With Deutsche Telekom, Meraki and Purple we found a perfect fitting WiFi solution and very reliable partners.”

Deutsche Telekom first started working with Purple in late 2016 and is currently in the process of becoming certified. Once the business is a Purple Certified Partner it will gain access to unlimited online training, technical support, NRF licences and preferential lead allocation, which will all prove useful as the firm looks to secure more business across Europe.

Commenting on the contract win, Gavin Wheeldon, CEO of Purple, said: “We are delighted to work with nicko cruises and Deutsche Telekom on this exciting project. It’s great to hear that Purple proved vital in sealing the deal with nicko cruises and I have no doubt that their team will be delighted with Purple’s capabilities. Also, as Deutsche Telekom is a new partner, it is great to see that they are actively winning new customers and I look forward to our relationship evolving.”