Cute, Clever & Fast - How this seabird could slash your Fleet Broadband costs

A typical ship using Fleet Broadband or Iridium as its primary satcom system could save 10s of thousands of dollars per year. Despite the click-bait headline, it is actually true. A clever mobile browser called Puffin removes the stuff you don't need from every web page you visit. Images and videos are optimised and compressed. When we tested it we saved 90% on data usage.

Puffin uses their own powerful servers to take the load off your mobile device and your marine satellite data connection. The page is first downloaded to their server, compressed and optimised. Then it is forwarded to your device on board. And it all happens very quickly. As well as the data savings, pages load in half the time or less compared to a normal browser such as Apple Safari.

Compressing browsers for satcom aren't a new thing. There have been various clunky attempts over the years by some of the Inmarsat service providers. And there are other browser apps available today such as Opera Mini that use a proxy server to save on data. But pages don't always work as intended. Puffin is the nicest one we have seen here at Acutec. In most cases we couldn't tell any difference between the page in a normal mobile browser versus the fast-loading, low-cost Puffin version. And it certainly has the cutest logo.

The innovative Puffin browser is free and available for Android and iOS in all the usual places. And there is also a desktop version in beta. For more info or to download, visit www.puffinbrowser.com

About the author

Jonathan is a professional engineer with a background in maritime communications and electronics. He founded Acutec Systems in 2004 and is managing director of the company.

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