Satellite phones have been around a long time. They connect to satellites rather than towers, and are transmitted far above the earth. These phones shine in remote areas without reliable landline or cellular coverage. Government and public safety agencies, aviation, maritime and energy companies are traditional satellite phone buyers. However, the drastic reduction in satellite phones cost over the last decade has attracted many users.
Satellite phones require line-of-sight with the sky to receive a signal for service. These phones use SIM cards and offer features like signal strength, low battery displays, phone books, text messages and voicemail. Some satellite phones have additional features like GSM compatibility, GPS displays, solar panels and data transmission. They are also water, dust and shock resistant. These phones offer various security features which are not available with a traditional cell phone.
These phones are designed to only send and receive calls. Nevertheless, newer satellite phones offer access to the internet. They have external antenna which must be extended to send and receive calls and text messages.
If you’re buying a satellite phone, it is essential to compare them with other satellite equipment. You need to ensure the quality of service (QoS), voice quality and other advantages.
Inmarsat and Iridium are two reliable satellite networks which have made satellite phones affordable to many. Other networks like Thuraya and Globalstar also offer different coverage which might be better in certain areas. Coverage area, reliability and call quality is all dependent on the satellite network. Iridium and Inmarsat satellite phones can receive and send text messages (SMS) or emails. The Inmarsat IsatPhone offers worldwide satellite network at reasonable price. Iridium 9575 Extreme, a new satellite phone, offers ultimate satellite communications experience.
The main downside here is the satellite phones cost – both to purchase the phone and to use it. The phones and their service costs are high. Satellite networks offer a wide range of postpaid and prepaid options. You can either get a monthly service plan for airtime or can use prepaid cards. Generally, airtime for satellite phones is less expensive than roaming charges on cell phone. However, the airtime and other services for satellite phones cost are high as compared to the standard cell phone charges.
With the advent of SATcase, it has become easier for people to communicate from anywhere. SATcase is an advanced technology that can transform your smart phone into a high-tech satellite phone. The key feature of SATcase is its ability to operate at a very low temperature (as low as -20 degree Celsius).
Although satellite phones cost high, their purpose and usefulness in an emergency is considerable. During an emergency, a satellite phone is the most viable option.