A satellite telephone, satellite phone, or satphone is a type of mobile phone that connects to orbiting satellites instead of terrestrial cell sites. This article is about artificial satellites For natural satellites also known as moons see Natural satellite. A cell site is a term used primarily in North America for a site where antennas and electronic communications equipment are placed to create a cell in a Mobile phone network Depending on the architecture of a particular system, coverage may include the entire Earth, or only specific regions. EARTH was a short-lived Japanese vocal trio which released 6 singles and 1 album between 2000 and 2001
The mobile equipment, also known as a terminal, varies widely. Inmarsat plc ( is an international Telecommunications company originally operating as an Intergovernmental organization Early satellite phone handsets had a size and weight comparable to that of a late 1980s or early 1990s mobile phone, but usually with a large retractable antenna. An antenna is a Transducer designed to transmit or Receive electromagnetic waves In other words antennas convert electromagnetic waves into More recent satellite phones are similar in size to a regular mobile phone while some prototype satellite phones have no distinguishable difference from an ordinary smartphones. A prototype is an original type form or instance of something serving as a typical example basis or standard for other things of the same category A smartphone is a Mobile phone offering advanced capabilities beyond a typical mobile phone often with PC -like functionality Satphones are popular on expeditions into remote areas where terrestrial cellular service is unavailable.
A fixed installation, such as used shipboard, may include large, rugged, rack-mounted electronics, and a steerable microwave antenna on the mast that automatically tracks the overhead satellites. Microwaves are electromagnetic waves with Wavelengths ranging from 1 mm to 1 m or frequencies between 0 Satellite phones have notoriously poor reception indoors, though it may be possible to get a consistent signal near a window or in the top floor of a building if the roof is sufficiently thin. The phones have connectors for external antennas that are often installed in vehicles and buildings. Some systems also allow for the use of repeaters, much like terrestrial mobile phone systems.
Satellite phones are usually issued with numbers in a special country calling code. This is a list of country calling codes defined by ITU-T recommendation E For example, Inmarsat satellite phones are issued with codes +870 through +874, while Iridium satellite phones are issued with codes +881 6 and +881 7. Inmarsat plc ( is an international Telecommunications company originally operating as an Intergovernmental organization The Iridium Satellite constellation is a system of 66 active communication Satellites with spares in orbit and on the ground Some satellite phones are issued with ordinary phone numbers, such as Globalstar satellite phones issued with U.S. telephone numbers. Globalstar is a Low Earth orbit (LEO Satellite constellation for Satellite phone and low-speed data communications somewhat similar to the Iridium
In some countries ruled by oppressive regimes such as Burma and Bangladesh possession of a satellite phone can be illegal as their signals will usually bypass local telecoms systems hindering censorship and wiretapping
Some satellite phones use satellites in geosynchronous orbit. Oppression is the act of using power to empower and/or privilege a group at the expense of disempowering marginalizing silencing and subordinating another group Burma, officially the Union of Myanmar ( pjìdàunzṵ mjàmmà nàinŋàndɔ̀ is the largest country by geographical area in mainland Southeast Asia. ( Bengali: বাংলাদেশ inc-Latn Bangladesh) officially Censorship is the suppression of speech or deletion of communicative material which may be considered objectionable harmful or sensitive as determined by a censor Wiretap redirects here For the radio program see WireTap (radio program Telephone tapping (or wire tapping / wiretapping in A geosynchronous orbit is an Orbit around the Earth with an Orbital period matching the Earth's sidereal rotation period These systems can maintain near-continuous global coverage with only three or four satellites, reducing the launch costs. However the satellites used for these systems are very heavy (approx. 5000kg) and therefore very expensive to build and launch. The satellites sit at an altitude of about 22,000 miles (35,000 km) and therefore a noticeable delay is present while making a phone call or using data services. The amount of bandwidth available on these systems is substantially higher than that of LEO systems, all three active systems provide portable satellite internet using laptop-sized terminals with speeds ranging from 60 kbits to 512 kbits.
Another disadvantage of geostationary satellite systems is that in many areas, even where a large amount of open sky is present, the line of sight between the phone and the satellite is broken by obstacles such as steep hills and forest and the user will need to find higher ground before being able to use the phone. This is not the case with Low Earth Orbit (LEO) services - even if the signal is blocked by an obstacle one can wait a few minutes until another satellite passes overhead.
LEO telephones utilizes LEO (low Earth orbit) satellite technology. For the superstate in George Orwell 's novel see Nations of Nineteen Eighty-Four. For a topic outline on this subject see List of basic Australia topics. MSAT, short for Mobile Satellite, is a Satellite -based Mobile telephony service developed by the National Research Council of Canada Mobile Satellite Ventures ( MSV) is a Reston VA company that develops Telecommunications systems that integrate Satellite and terrestrial Thuraya ( Arabic: الثريا /aθːurajːa/ which is the Arabic name for the Pleiades) is a regional Satellite phone provider The Americas are the lands of the Western hemisphere or New World, consisting of the Continents of North America and South America A Low Earth Orbit (LEO is generally defined as an Orbit within the locus extending from the Earth’s surface up to an altitude of 2000 km Basic principle A traditional landline telephone system also known as "plain old telephone service" (POTS, commonly handles both signaling and audio information EARTH was a short-lived Japanese vocal trio which released 6 singles and 1 album between 2000 and 2001 In Physics, an orbit is the gravitationally curved path of one object around a point or another body for example the gravitational orbit of a planet around a star This article is about artificial satellites For natural satellites also known as moons see Natural satellite. Technology is a broad concept that deals with a Species ' usage and knowledge of Tools and Crafts and how it affects a species' ability to control and adapt The advantages include providing worldwide wireless coverage with no gaps. "The world " is a proper noun for the planet Earth envisioned from an Anthropocentric or Human Worldview, as a place LEO satellites orbit the earth at high speed, low altitude orbits with an orbital time of 70–90 minutes, an altitude of 640 to 1120 kilometres (400 to 700 miles), and provide coverage cells. Speed is the rate of motion, or equivalently the rate of change in position often expressed as Distance d traveled per unit of Altitude is the Elevation of a point or object from a known level or datum (plural data A minute is a Unit of measurement of Time or of Angle. The minute is a unit of Time equal to 1/60th of an Hour or 60 Since the satellites are not geosynchronous, they must fly complete orbits and thus further guarantee complete coverage over every area by at least one satellite at all times. A geosynchronous orbit is an Orbit around the Earth with an Orbital period matching the Earth's sidereal rotation period
Two such systems, both based in the United States started up in the late 1990s but soon went into bankruptcy after they failed to gain the number of subscribers required to fund the large satellite launch costs. The United States of America —commonly referred to as the They are now operated by new owners who bought the assets for a fraction of their original cost and are now both planning to launch replacement constellations supporting higher bandwidth. In Business and Accounting, assets are everything owned by a person or company (all tangible and intangible property that can be converted into cash. Data speeds for current networks are between 2200 bit/s and 9600 bit/s using a satellite handset.
While it is possible to obtain old handsets for the Thuraya, Iridium, and Globalstar networks for approximately $200, the newest handsets are still quite expensive. TerreStar Networks is a Reston Virginia -based company that operates integrated Satellite and terrestrial Telecommunications systems The iconic Iridium 9505A, although released in 2001, still sells for well over $1,000 new. Since satellite phones are purpose-built for one particular network and cannot be switched to other networks, the price of handsets varies with the performance of the network. If a satellite phone provider encounters trouble with its network the handset prices will fall, then increase once new satellites are launched. Similarly, handset prices will increase when calling rates are reduced.
Among the most expensive satellite phones are BGAN terminals, often costing several thousand dollars. A Broadband Global Area Network or BGAN for short is a form of Satellite internet and Telephony provided by INMARSAT. However these satphones provide Broadband Internet as well as voice communications. Satellite phones are sometimes subsidised by the provider if one signs a post-paid contract but subsidies are usually only a few hundred dollars or less.
Since most satellite phones are built under license or the manufacturing of handsets is contracted out to OEM's, operators have a large influence over the selling price. Satellite networks operate under proprietary closed standards, making it difficult for manufacturers to independently make their own handsets.
The cost of making calls from a satellite phone is usually quite high, while calling them from landlines and regular mobile phones is extremely expensive. A landline, main line or fixed-line is a Telephone line which travels through a solid medium either metal Wire or Optical fibre Rates from landlines and mobile phones range from $3 to $14 per minute with Iridium and INMARSAT being some of the most expensive networks to call. The receiver of the call pays nothing, unless they are being called via a special reverse-charge service. Making calls between different satellite phone networks is also notoriously expensive with calling rates of up to $15 per minute.
Calls from satellite phones to landlines are usually around $. 80 to $1. 50 per minute unless special offers are used. Such promotions are usually bound to a particular geographic area where traffic is low. Globalstar is currently offering unlimited calling plans until 2010 - something almost unheard of with satellite phones but their current network is highly unreliable and could be out of service sometime in 2008. .
All satellite phone networks have pre-paid plans, with vouchers ranging from $10 to $5000.
Most mobile telephone networks operate close to capacity during normal times and spikes in call volumes caused by widespread emergencies often overload the system just when it is needed the most. Examples reported in the media where this have occurred include the attacks of 9/11/2001, the Hawaiian earthquake, the 2003 Northeast blackouts, Hurricane Katrina, and the 2007 Minnesota bridge collapse. The 2006 Hawaii earthquake was an offshore Earthquake occurring 10 km (6 miles southwest from Puakō Hawai'i, United States, on Sunday October 15 The Northeast Blackout of 2003 was a massive widespread Power outage that occurred throughout parts of the Northeastern and Midwestern United States Hurricane Katrina of the 2005 Atlantic hurricane season was the costliest hurricane, as well as one of the five deadliest in the history of the United States The I-35W Mississippi River bridge (officially known simply as Bridge 9340) was an eight-lane steel Truss arch bridge that carried Interstate 35W across
Also, terrestrial cell antennas and networks can be damaged by natural disasters. Satellite telephony can avoid this problem and be critical in natural disaster communications.