Make voice calls independently of terrestrial communication networks
Send & receive text messages (SMS) anywhere on the globe
Global live positioning and monitoring of personnel, vehicles and other assets all around the world
Send and receive email and use dedicated apps from anywhere
Comparing satellite phones is vital to matching the mission critical needs of your application with the function and capabilities of the respective satellite communications equipment.
Ultimately a satellite phone is only as good as the network behind it and each network, Iridium, Inmarsat and Thuraya, have various strengths and benefits.
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Iridium Satellite Phones
Iridium puts global satellite telephone communications in the palm of your hand providing you with the convenience of fixed or portable communications and the ability to take care of business no matter where life takes you.
Applications for the system vary greatly, including equipment for mobile, personal, or fixed location usage. All hardware is designed with the end user in mind, whether it be in the cabin of an aircraft, the frontlines of a military action or the wheelhouse of a ship.
The Iridium 9575 Extreme is the most rugged, compact, satellite phone on the market today. Built with high weather resistance, GPS capabilities, personal location tracking features, and an S.O.S. button to quickly initiate a phone call to a pre-programmed emergency contact number. The Iridium Extreme PTT version offers unlimited-use Push-to-Talk communications for a fixed monthly fee, anywhere on earth. It offers battery life for 6 hours of talk time and up to 30 hours on standby.
The Iridium 9555 is the economical work horse of the Iridium satellite phone family.
Iridium GO! is a pocket sized portable battery powered Wi-Fi hotspot that lets you take your smart phone or tablet virtually anywhere. Make phone calls, send texts or emails, share photos – even send automated GPS location reports. Just download the appropriate app for your iOS or Android smartphone or tablet and start communicating.
Iridium has 66 different satellites that are only a few hundred miles above the surface across the globe. Iridium will get signal at the poles, unlike Inmarsat and Thuraya. Because its satellites constantly move around, the signal moves along with it. The moving satellites also means that if you’re in an area where your signal is obstructed in one direction, like on a mountain side or close to buildings, the satellites can move into your range without you having to move and allowing you to make calls with Iridium. Overall, Iridium has the best coverage of all satellite networks.
Inmarsat Satellite Phones
Inmarsat Global Satellite Phone Service provide a clear, dependable voice service for users operating between 50° N and 50° S latitude. Inmarsat GSPS offers voice calling, short messaging (SMS), email-to-text, and 2400 bps data.
Choose from the low-cost IsatPhone Pro or the robust IsatPhone 2 – both offering unrivalled battery life and all the other features you need to stay connected.
IsatPhone 2 is a tough phone for a tough world. The robust handset has been engineered to cope with anything that nature can throw at it – from searing heat to icy blasts, desert sandstorms or monsoon rain. It offers unrivaled battery life – 8 hours of talk time and up to 160 hours on standby.
Together, IsatPhone 2’s design and capabilities – including safety features – make it ideal for the most demanding of users in sectors such as civil government, oil and gas, NGOs, and media. The phone has location services, including tracking and assistance button, to keep people updated of your GPS coordinates when it matters. Receive notification of inbound calls even with antenna stowed.
IsatPhone 2 by easy-to-use interface with large high-visibility, scratch-resistant transflective display that is readable even in bright sunlight.
Inmarsat phones operates over 3 global geostationary satellites ensuring reliable call stability and network connection. The Inmarsat phones requires a direct, unobstructed line of sight between the phone and the satellite in the sky above. The phone has poorer connection when you get close to the poles, and loses signal at the poles.
Thuraya Satellite Phones
Thuraya offers the smallest satellite phones available in its vast coverage area which includes most of Europe, northern and central Africa, the Middle East, central and southeastern Asia, the Indian subcontinent, Japan, and Australia.
Thuraya phone choices include stand-alone satellite phone handsets and BYOD phones for use with your iPhone or Android smart phone. The handheld Thuraya phones offer GmPRS always on internet speeds with up to 60 kbps down.
The Thuraya XT-PRO is the most feature rich Thuraya satellite phone. It includes built-in GPS, BeiDou and Glonass capability to assure the highest flexibility in all regions. A large display composed of hardened Gorilla® glass is designed for the harshest environments.
Thuraya XT-LITE is the economy version of the Thuraya XT-PRO. The XT-LITE provides voice and SMS messaging and up to 6 hours of talk time or 80 hours of standby time. The XT-LITE does not have 9.6 kbps data or GmPRS capabilities.
With the Thuraya SatSleeve+ for your iPhone or Android you dock your smart phone into the handheld Thuraya SatSleeve+. Then, use the Thuraya SatSleeve Hotspot App to make calls and send texts, emails and tweets over Thuraya satellite network. The SatSleeve+ has its own Thuraya SIM card slot. Your smart phone will still be able to make and receive calls over its own cellular network.
The Thuraya Coverage Map shows the primary coverage region of Thuraya. Weaker “fringe” coverage may exist in the extended coverage areas. Even in the primary coverage regions, coverage can be blocked by nearby terrain features such as mountains or trees. You must have a direct line of sight between yourself and the Thuraya satellites over the equator to be able to make calls.