In spring 2017, the world’s largest private cruise company MSC Cruises presented the digital innovation program #MSCforMe at ITB Berlin. For several years, MSC Cruises has worked with behavioral scientists, digital and technology experts to focus even more on the needs of its guests with the help of cutting-edge consumer technology. With approximately 23,500 employees worldwide and offices in 45 countries, MSC Cruises is the fourth largest cruise company in the world.
The core element of the #MSCForMe program is a mobile localization function for passengers on the ships. The localization of the guests allows a comfortable indoor navigation with the help of which the passengers can orient themselves on the ships without stress and very quickly. In addition, MSC had the problem that children kept getting lost on the large ships. This circumstance meant undesirable stress for parents looking for recreation and was also associated with a high additional workload for the staff, who were kept from their actual jobs by the search for the “lost” children. MSC explicitly requested a solution to this problem as well.
The particular technical challenge lay, on the one hand, in the design of the ships and, on the other, in the fact that the solution had to function absolutely autonomously on-premises on the high seas and with a large number of children to be monitored.
Favendo developed an integrated mobile tracking and navigation system that allows passengers to find their way around the ships using an app. To this end, Favendo developed KidsFinder, which allows parents who have booked this service to view the live location of their children in the app and be navigated to them.
Favendo has equipped the ships with a BLE infrastructure consisting of several thousand beacons each. Children receive a special wristband that communicates with the infrastructure when they check in, if they wish. The Commander SDK, which enables seamless mobile indoor navigation, was integrated with the existing MSCForMe app.
Additional ships have been equipped by Favendo with a static wayfinding solution, where guests can find out their current location on the ship via kiosks and terminals.
The requirements set were met 100 percent. In the meantime, Favendo has already equipped ten ships of the cruise line. The Kidsfinder service is one of the most requested services in the MSCForMe program. Other services, such as a Friends and Family locator, are build on Favendo’s positioning function.