NSN Puts Broadband on Austrian Trains

Austrian railway operator WESTbahn has commissioned Nokia Siemens Networks (NSN) to equip seven new double-decker luxury express trains on its Salzburg-Vienna route with always-on broadband and other online services by the end of 2011. The broadband connectivity will also enable the monitoring of trains and onboard equipment to improve operational support.

“Delivering a better experience for our passengers is a key priority for us, and providing onboard broadband access and other online services will add to our train’s existing top-class facilities,” says Thomas Baierl, CIO at WESTbahn Management. “Apart from Nokia Siemens Networks’ end-to-end capabilities and competence in train-to-land data transmission, what truly impressed us was their team’s clear understanding of our business needs.”

Michael Tremmel, who heads up broadband on trains across Europe for NSN, says the company’s approach to delivering broadband on trains will provide WESTbahn’s passengers with seamless internet connectivity. “It will also enable train attendants to sell tickets to passengers on board the train, as the solution will connect ticketing devices to a centralized server,” says Tremmel. “These services will make travel more convenient and enjoyable. In addition, the solution’s flexible architecture will enable the WESTbahn to easily extend its offering to include CCTV services.”

Under the contract, NSN will provide a complete network operation centre, which will enable WESTbahn to track its trains via GPS, check on-board equipment performance, and monitor the train-to-land connection. The company will integrate this solution with a data centre on land for real-time data access, and will also deliver operational and maintenance services.