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Royal Caribbean to give free Windows tablet to each of its 40,000 ship workers

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All 40,000 ship-based employees of the Royal Caribbean cruise line will soon be given a free Windows tablet for use in their work as part of an overall technology plan from the pleasure cruise company.

The program will start with the newest ship in the Royal Caribbean fleet, Quantum of the Sea, and will be completed sometime in October for all of the cruise line's other employees. The tablets themselves will be built by a company called HEXA. In a statement, Microsoft says of the tablet:

"It's incredibly thin and light, which will accommodate the very active, very mobile lifestyle of its employees. It will allow the crew to leverage Office 365 apps, nearly limitless OneDrive cloud storage and the ability to stay connected with friends and family with Skype. Royal Caribbean International also selected Windows because of the choice available to them across form factors and price points, which was unmatched by competing offerings."

Royal Caribbean will also have a number of other technology advances on board the Quantum of the Sea ship, including RFID WOWband wristbands that will serve as the room key for passenger and more. There will also be custom apps provided to passenger to help book dinner reservations, arrange for off-ship excursions and more. There will even be a Bionic Bar on board that will feature robot bartenders attempting to mix drinks.

What do you think of this new Windows tablet sales win to the Royal Caribbean fleet?

Source: Microsoft, Royal Caribbean

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Reader comments

Royal Caribbean to give free Windows tablet to each of its 40,000 ship workers

60 Comments

They all gonna use the smallest tile and try their best to make it look iPad.
Seen some Windows Phone owners using only the smallest tile size

At least they have the choice to do that though...on iPhone your really only have the option to change the arrangement on each page. With folders my wp has never looked so good and organized!

you are calling peoples idiots because of their personal preference? Riiiiggghhhttt..

What a pleasant human you are.

If Threshold turns out as rumoured how will it work for tablets such as these? Makes that rumour even less credible.

More than likely these tablets are full windows, since RT tabs are only made by MS and Nokia now. Also, I would imagine MS helped bring their custom apps to a touch type environment anyway.

They're already filled with porn, but we need to throw a few daisy cutters and 1000lbs jdam bombs at the radical Islamist terrorists.

Keep in touch with their families and manage their stuff when they're 8,000 miles away from home. You know, a morale booster?

Well...some of those tablets better be waterproof. Otherwise I wouldn't advise RC to give them to staff in the areas of the swimming pools, SPAs etc.

 

That said, they've chosen Windows because it's the logic thing to do. Chances are, most of the RC network runs on Windows-based machines, so the tablets are a normal extention.

It would be impractical to have everything on Windows and then give Xperia Zx Tablet's to the employees. Or iPoops.

If you are a westerner, I advise you to first thoroughly investigate working conditions and minimum wage :)

Advertisements directed towards the passengers? LOL!

Hello? Earth calls Rodney? This is Microsoft. That idea certainly never even crossed their marketing team's minds.

I know, right??? What in the world was I thinking... And, especially coming from me, the biggest critic of MS's marketing know how....
..........
Man, I swear if they could market as good as Sapple they would sell twice as many products... When will they learn?

Love cruiises, love them! But do they really need tablets? The cleaning people, for instance. They work their butts off. I respect what they do. They are constantly on their feet dealing with all the nasty crap that people onboard leave behind. What are they going to do with a tablet?

Manage supplies of cleaning products, for example?

It can help replace those clipped sheets of paper they carry around in each trolley. With a tablet they can just press a button and the storehouse immediately gets an updated inventory of what's needed more or less.

Funny seeing this as I was just literally reading about the anthem of the seas (sister ship) that I'm going on will have an xbox one zone where you can play on xbox live.

The pay on a cruise ship may not be lucrative for a US, Canadian, France, Isreal, or the Uk, but for the rest of the world it offers more than what is available in their own country. What you are calling a pr stunt will allow many of my friends the opportunity to send their current tablets home to their families especially their younger brothers and sisters that will give them an advantage in their countries. For those coming from Malaysia, Kenya, Nepal, or India the cruise ships are the first time many get to see a doctor, dentist, running water, bed, a/c, make more money than they ever have, send money home to improve their families condition, and travel to places that they couldn't normally get visas for...now add a free tablet with free WiFi. My friends are going to be very happy if their cruise ship decides to give them tablets...pr stunt or not.

I am not disputing that, however cruise ships do everything they can to pay their workers as little as possible. Just because it's common practice, it does not mean it is right. I'm sure many of the employees would like a rise in pay. Like it or not, the reason these ships employ people from these countries is because labour is cheap there. I'm sure a tablet will give your friends and their families an advantage, however I think that if cruise ships choose to take passengers from Europe and the USA, they should at least pay them to these countries' standards and minimum wage. That, I am sure, would make many of the employees happy, too.

As a former 1 contract employee of Carnival, you are right. Like when Carnival announced that they will be paying for our plane tickets. 2 weeks later, everybody realised that they took it out of our salary, and than some. It was a rip off. I am from Croatia, so money was not the main reason I went there, but that was a huge dick move. I fear something like this might happen at Royal as well.

It's nice to see another corporate commitment like the Delta agreement.

I have a question about the article, why use the term "free"? RC is issuing these tablets "for use in their work". Is any different that the Delta plan? Is this different that almost every other corporate environment where company provides computing equipment as a function of the job?

On a cruise ship, you work 12-14h a day. Sometimes even more. So it does not really matter how will you use the tablet. Chances are, it's gonna be split usage.

I'm sure you can wrap aluminum foil around your arm, just in case. :P RFID only works within millimeters of the sensor. Bluetooth and WiFi are far more creepy, in terms of someone following your every move.

Dear Royal Caribbean employee,

 

It is on our behalf that we must give you the sad news, you and every other staff member of the Royal Caribbean will be having a pay cut, starting next week. However to compensate this, we are giving each and every employee a new Windows tablet. We know what our employees want which is why we are giving them to you for free* It is important to keep your tablet clean and not damaged since we are not responsible for any damages done to your tablet.

We thank you again for working for us,

Sincerly

Royal Carribean

 

*The tablet is only free if you keep working for us, if you decide to stop working for us we will confiscate it.