Superyacht owners and high-level charter clientele demand the most out of their yachts, their crew and their on-the-water experiences, and their expectations for lickety-split internet are no exception. KVH Superyacht Group created KVH Elite in 2019 to cater to these premiere-level clients by offering unlimited VSAT streaming, uninterrupted connectivity, and fast speeds using KVH’s V7-HTS and V11-HTS satellite antennas. KVH Elite clients enjoy dedicated bandwidth, and KVH can add capacity thanks to their partnership with satellite operator Intelsat, which powers KVH Elite connectivity with their FlexMaritime service.
“KVH Elite delivers HD-quality video streaming and fast speeds for a weekly or monthly rate,” says Alexandra Mouligné, program manager of KVH Superyacht Group. “Clients can watch movies, enjoy social media, and video conference from their yacht at similar speeds to what they have at home for a fixed rate.”
KVH Elite clients with the TracPhone V11-HTS enjoy downlink speeds that are as fast as 20 megabits per second (Mbps) and uplink speeds that are as quick as 3 Mbps (10/3 Mbps with the TracPhone V7-HTS). Critically, there are no limits to the amount of data that clients can consume, nor do KVH Elite clients ever face overage charges.
“It’s driven by demand,” says Mouligné, explaining that KVH Elite debuted in the Caribbean for the 2019/2020 season, and that KVH is planning to add KVH Elite service in the Mediterranean for the 2020 season. This flexibility, plus KVH’s ability to increase bandwidth as the market demands, comes courtesy of Intelsat’s FlexMaritime service, which delivers high-availability satellite services through a multi-layered network of high-throughput satellites (HTS) and widebeam satellites.
“We see a mix of owners and charter companies,” says Mouligné about KVH Elite clientele. “Owners love it because they might only get to use their yacht for a few weeks a year and they expect everything to work perfectly. Charter companies like it because it’s easy to recoup their connectivity expenses when there’s a known, flat fee.”
While KVH Elite is aimed at superyachts, Mouligné explains that some high-level sportfishing operators are also clients. “There’s a gamification of sportfishing, and anglers want to show off their prize catches in real-time,” she says, explaining that premiere-level anglers regularly run live feeds of their prize pelagic catches.
Clients can determine the duration of their KVH Elite service, which is currently offered for $3,000 per week or $12,000 per month, and KVH Superyacht Group offers bespoke longer-term arrangements. Once the KVH Elite subscription period is completed, owners can revert back to their standard KVH mini-VSAT Broadband HTS service or further downshift to KVH’s VoIP-only service (see website for details).
Better still, KVH Elite clients enjoy 24/7/365 technical support and concierge service from KVH Superyacht Group. “We proactively monitor more than 100 key performance indicators,” says Mouligné, adding that KVH makes antenna-performance enhancements as needed. Should an issue arise, says Mouligné, “we try to make the necessary adjustments before clients even notice.”
Which, of course, is the exact level of unflinching service, support and speed that superyacht owners, high-end charter companies, and elite-level sportfishing operations demand.