Shipping firm uses hologram technology to ‘beam in’ to meetings

hologram technology

Columbia Shipmanagement (CSM) has invested in new hologram technology that allows employees to ‘attend’ business meetings and interactive training sessions around the world, by beaming in as a 4K holographic display.

The Cyprus-based maritime services provider reveals it has been working with US tech company PORTL for over a year to create its cutting-edge kit.

“The future is already here,” CSM president and chief executive Mark O’Neil told an audience in Manila, as he appeared as a life-sized hologram, speaking from nearly 9,000km away in Cyprus.

To capture a speaker using PORTL’s technology, they must be filmed in a purpose-built studio. Readers can see the technology in action in the video below:

While holograms are increasingly being used in live events such as music concerts, CSM says it believes this to be a first for the shipping industry.

“The equipment we use is high-tech but very portable and takes the whole issue of speaker contributions to conferences or business meetings to a completely different level,” O’Neil continues. “A fleet director in one part of the world can mentor ships’ officers attending a conference in another, while customers and suppliers can have more intuitive and interactive meetings without having to step on a plane and fly thousands of miles to a meeting.

“This is ‘tomorrow’s world’ happening today and we are delighted to be able to make it a reality.”

PORTL’s boxes have built-in speakers that allow the speaker’s voice to be heard by the audience, as well as cameras and microphones so the speaker can see the audience in front of their own holographic projection.

The virtual “time zone-hopping” technology will elevate CSM’s training capabilities and support its commitment to sustainability by reducing global travel, the company adds.

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