Top 10 Satellite Phone Tips

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Find out how to get the most value for money from Satellite Phones. , America's Best Satellite Phone Rental Service Provider, today releases the Top 10 Satellite Phone Tips:

1 - You can rent a satellite phone or you can buy one

You should base your decision on your length and frequency of need. If you just need a satellite phone once or twice a year for a week or 2 each time then clearly renting is best, but if you are renting 3 times a year or more then you should look at buying. You can rent a satellite phone from as little as $39.99 per week, and pay as low as $0.99 cents per minute. Most Satellite Phone Rental companies will also rent you accessories such as portable solar chargers, car antennas, pelican cases and universal travel plugs. You can buy a satellite phone like the Qualcomm GSP 1600 for use with the Globalstar Network for around $749, or you can buy an Iridium 9505A for use with the Iridium Network for around $1495. When you buy a satellite phone you are going to pay less for the minutes than if you rent. Rates for Iridium phones go as low as $0.85 cents per minute.

2 - Not all satellite phones work in all places

Make sure that you choose the right Satellite Phone Service for the area or country you are going to be visiting. For example Iridium service covers the entire globe, excluding only Poland, Cuba & North Korea.

3 - You must be able to see the sky on order to get a connection and make a call

Satellite phones will not work inside a building or underground. They will also not work well if you are surrounded by trees, tall buildings or at the bottom of a valley. Note that if you are going to be in a vehicle or boat you can get external antennas to get service. If you buy a fixed mast antenna then your satellite phone will indeed work indoors, but it will have to be fixed to that antenna cable at all times.

4 - Terrorists steal Satellite Phones

If you are going to an active war zone then I strongly recommend taking a Satellite Phone with a prepaid sim card. Satellite phones are the preferred method of communication for terrorists, who often look to steal satellite phones so they can communicate with each other and the media for free. If your phone is stolen by terrorists it will be used constantly, and you will be liable for the minutes. A prepaid phone will limit your loss to the value of the satellite phone and the amount on the prepaid card at the time the phone is stolen. The phone I would recommend for use in any war zone would be the Iridium 9505A.

5 - You can get email and surf the web through a Satellite Phone

Globalstar and Iridium satellite phones do offer internet access, with the use of data kits, but connection speeds are slow. Globalstar will connect you at around 2.4K and Iridium runs around 18K. These speeds will usually be enough to check email. If you want to surf the web I recommend switching off images in your browser as they will take a long time to load. If you need a fast internet connection then in my opinion the only choice is InMarsat Network. The BGAN service from InMarsat claims to give you top speeds of 300K or higher, although realistic connection speeds run more around 64K. You can rent a unit like the Nera WorldPro 1000 for around $120 per week, plus MB, expect to pay at least $7 per MB of transfer.

6 - Take a power supply with you

If you are going hiking, hunting, fishing or on any other trip where you will not have ready access to a power supply then make sure to get a portable solar charger. A portable solar charger can now kick out up to 25 Watts and 12 milliamps, fully recharging a dead sat phone battery in as little as 3.5 hours, with continuous sunlight. These chargers connect to sat phones via cigarette lighter adapters and will often also be powerful enough to recharge even a laptop.

7 - SMS and Satellite Phones

Most Satellite phones can receive SMS messages

Most companies do not charge to receive messages, but sending a message from a satellite phone can cost 50 cents per message or more. The use of SMS can save a lot of money as opposed to actual voice calls.

8 - Check rates before calling a Satellite Phone from your fixed line or cell phone

Placing calls to a satellite phone from a regular fixed line phone or cell phone can be extremely expensive, so if you are going to call a sat phone I suggest you check with your Long Distance or Wireless provider first. A great way to save money is with the Iridium network which offers 2 stage calling. It works like this, the person who wants to call you just calls a US number and then enters your Satellite Phone number. With this method they just pay regular US long distance rates, and you just get each minute used deducted from your rental or prepaid plan at regular rates.

9 - Take care when calling from one Satellite Phone Service to another

Calling from one sat phone network to another (example placing a call to a Globalstar phone from an InMarsat phone) can be very expensive, up to $12 a minute or more, so check the rates before you call and don't get a nasty shock.

10 - Use Globalstar when in the USA

Voice calling in USA best service is with Globalstar because the rate of connection they have for voice calls is high, around 7000 baud, but when using a Globalstar phone outside the USA note where you are as they actually have roaming areas where rates can be much higher than your standard rates, as high as $4 per minute.

All Road Communications rents Globalstar satellite phones, like the Qualcomm GSP 1600, from just $19.49 per week, and Iridium satellite phones, like the Iridium 9505A, from just $39.99 per week. All Road also rents all the accessories which you might need, including Pelican Cases, Solar Panels, Batteries, Car Chargers, Fixed Mast Antennas and Car Antennas.

All Road is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.

All Road can deliver your phone the same day you order it, if necessary, and will ship your phone anywhere on earth and get it there on time, guaranteed.

Call All Road anytime to order, or for a free quote, for your personal or business needs at 1-888-884-7623 or by direct dial at USA 619-596-4574.

You may order your satellite phone rental online at


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Chris Hoar
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