Planning a trip on the seas? Carnival’s Princess Cruises will soon come with a high-tech wearable and companion app that will be your portal to everything — from checking in and opening doors to having your drink come to you wherever you are.
It’s all thanks to the Ocean Medallion, a device built in collaboration with engineering consulting firm Nytec that features an engraving of the passenger’s name. The waterproof wearable goes wherever you want: around the neck as a pendant, on the wrist as a watch, or clipped to your clothes. It has a monthlong battery life, so you don’t need to worry about charging it, and it can even make payments.
The Ocean Medallion will act as your ID, carrying all your information, so that when you arrive to board the cruise, all you’ll need to do is have the wearable scanned. It also acts as your room key; just touch the handle to have sensors detect your specific device and unlock the door. That action can then trigger a set of other actions — such as adjusting the air conditioner and automatically turning on the lights.
Carnival’s single-use device requires cruise ships to be outfitted with thousands of sensors. The first ships to make use of the technology will be the Regal Princess (on a Nov. 13 cruise) and the Royal Princess and Caribbean Princess in early 2018. The wearable itself can perform all its functions thanks to NFC and Bluetooth Low Energy.
Ocean Compass is the second critical part of an overhaul of the cruise system — it’s an app available on digital displays for crew and guests throughout the ship, or it can be downloaded for access on a mobile device. Passengers can navigate their way around the ship via the app, make reservations at spas and restaurants, and more.
For example, the Medallion and app allow guests to order food or drinks and have them delivered to their current location, or wherever they plan to be in the next few minutes. Passengers can also track where the rest of the family is around the ship and communicate with them via a messaging component on the app.
The Medallion and the app are meant to constantly gather data about you — that also means Carnival may use the information to offer targeted advertising, according to CNET.
If you’re hoping to try out the new experience, choose the “Medallion Class Ocean Vacations” option when booking your cruise later this year when the features will be available.
An earlier article on this subject inaccurately reported that Disney was bringing the Ocean Medallion to Carnival’s cruise. We apologize for the error.