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Following a successful trial period, the Port of Cork has announced details of their partnership with Ringaskiddy based company Sea-Fi Marine Data Communication Ltd. Sea-Fi is a wireless network covering the navigational areas of Cork Harbour, from 12Km off Roches Point and for the last six months Sea-Fi have provided Wi-Fi on board the Port of Cork owned vessels, MV Denis Murphy and MV Gerry O'Sullivan.

This has proved very successful with the work vessels able to send and receive emails, images, and gain access to web cameras around Cork Harbour. It has also proven a time and money saver, eliminating the need for the work vessels and crew to go back to base for administrative purposes to process time-sheets, etc., as this can now be completed on board.

The partnership between the Port of Cork and Sea-Fi will see the roll-out of SeaFi Horizon(TM) WiFi for all visiting commercial vessels either sailing or on anchor inside and outside Cork Harbour. This is the first port in Ireland to have a fully operational Sea-Fi network.

Speaking about the partnership, Port of Cork Acting Harbour Master, Captain Paul O'Regan said: "Following the successful trial period on board our tug and work-boat we are very pleased to announce this partnership with local based company Sea-Fi. Many commercial vessels using the Port of Cork use the internet via their on board sat-coms device. Offering Wi-Fi will mean they have a more efficient service when transferring large data and faster download speeds which means cost savings for the ships equipped with a SeaFi Horizon(TM)ship station."

He continued: "Very often some crew have no access to the internet while in a port, but now with Port of Cork SeaFi Dockside(TM) service, crew will be able to access their emails, call their family with Voice over IP (VoIP) which will greatly improve crew welfare." SeaFi Dockside(TM) will be available in Ringaskiddy Deepwater Berth, Tivoli Container Terminal and Cobh Cruise Terminal.

Initially this partnership will see the SeaFi Dockside (TM) being rolled out at Ringaskiddy Deepwater Berth, Tivoli Container Terminal and Cobh Cruise Berth. This is not a marina style Wi-Fi network, but a highly advanced system capable of transferring data throughout the harbour area. It is proposed in the future to roll out a similar service which would be offered to leisure craft using Cork Harbour.