But will it work?
I’ve written how I have a SpotX by Globalstar (internal link) in case of emergencies when I am beyond cellular coverage.
I’m glad I have the device but the keyboard is difficult to use and it is a text based message service, in fact, the texts must be less than 150 characters.
Still, despite those limitations, it can connect with the outside world and I bought into a personal recovery service and a vehicle recovery service.
Globalstar has a new device. It’s called a Sat-Fi2 which is a small satellite terminal that works off your smart phone.
Besides text and regular e-mail, it provides voice! And a tie in to the nearest 911 center in case of an emergency. Voice! I can’t tell you how long I have waited for this.
The last time I priced sat phones was three years ago before my travels through the Southwest. Hardware was from $750 to $1,000 which I could manage. It was the air time that killed the deal.
Just that short time ago, air time was 75 cents to a dollar a minute. And you needed to buy huge blocks of airtime to get that price. And those minutes expired quickly. No rollover, use them up quick. A real racket.
I think Globalstar may have added more capacity by putting up more satellites, don’t know. I can’t explain the price drop.
Will it work? I’m going to find out on my upcoming trip into Utah. Right now, I am awaiting it to arrive, whereupon I will take it on the road. I still have my SpotX paid up until September so I am not going without a backup. And I have my handheld ham radio. And my CB radio.
Globalstar is running a promotion on the device for whatever reasons I do not know. $249 dollars for the hardware, figure $300 or so with tax and shipping, and $50 a month for unlimited voice and data.
Let’s talk about that data. The most Globalstar is promising is 72kbps, realistically, you’ll be getting data transfer at the equivalent of a 56K modem from 1996. You won’t be doing heavy business with this device but you will get e-mails out and back. But voice!
Nothing beats voice communication for relaying real time information. Everybody knows that. Now, I just have to find out if this is a broken or kept promise. I’ll be reporting back soon.
If you want to try this unit, deal with Globalstar directly. Going through a third party means trouble.
Here’s a link to them, and no, I do not get a commission. Nothing on this site is commercial, nothing is meant to sell anything. Ever seen an ad?
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