Our pick of the top 5 gadgets for your next expedition

Hike in desertEvery January we get plenty of enquiries from people full of enthusiasm to plan their next adventure. Of course, for those planning trips in remote areas satellite communications are often an essential part of their trip not only for keeping followers back home up-to-date but also for their life-saving SOS functionality.

Here’s our pick of the best gear for your next expedition:

DeLorme inReach Satellite Trackers

DeLorme-inReach-SE-Satellite-Tracker

The DeLorme range of inReach Trackers are award-winning satellite communicators that use the Iridium global satellite network to enable communication anywhere in the world.  The trackers offer 2-way personal and SOS communications and remote Follow-me/Find-me tracking and have been used by numerous GTC customers to track journeys all over the world.

Can I see the inReach in action? Check out Jon Beardmore’s DeLorme page, driving on a 25,000 mile round trip to China/South East Asia and back.  https://share.delorme.com/JonBeardmore

DeLorme Satellite Trackers are available from £150 ex VAT

BGAN Satellite Internet TerminalsThrane-Explorer-in-Use

BGAN terminals are ideal for travellers who need an internet connection during their trip. We offer a variety of terminals, all offering speeds of at least 384 kbps.  Although they are not as fast as the speed home broadband connections we are used to these days they are fine for sending and receiving emails, photos, updating blogs and general internet browsing.

Who uses a BGAN terminal? British adventurer Leo Houlding counts a BGAN terminal in his top five expedition gadgets:

http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2013/nov/09/expert-guide-gadgets

BGAN Terminals are available from £1,115 ex VAT

Thuraya SatSleeve

thuraya-satsleeveThe Thuraya SatSleeve is a world first in satellite add-ons, transforming an iPhone 4/4S/5 into a satellite phone, allowing you to send and receive SMS messages and make calls using the Thuraya network, which covers 2/3rds of the planet.  It’s great to know that you can use your normal iPhone in areas of GSM coverage to reduce costs and have the back-up of the SatSleeve in more remote areas.  The iPhone 5 version also allows you to use data services to update your Facebook and Twitter pages.

Coming soon…Thuraya SatSleeve for Android handsets

http://www.globaltelesat.co.uk/blog/thuraya-launches-satsleeve-for-android

Thuraya SatSleeve is available from £415 ex VAT

Globalstar GSP-1700 Satellite PhoneGlobalstar

With inclusive plans offering voice and data calls for as little as €0.15 per minute and the lowest handset prices in the market, Globalstar sat phones are hard to beat. In 2013 Globalstar became the only mobile satellite service provider to deploy a second-generation constellation of low-earth-orbit (LEO) satellites, allowing you connect to one of the most advanced and modern satellite networks currently available. With pre-paid plans being launched at the end of Jan Globalstar is a great value handset.

Who uses a Globalstar sat phone? Team Savoir Faire used a Globalstar phone on their round Britain rowing challenge http://www.gbrow2013.com/

Globalstar GSP-1700 is available for just £250 ex VAT

Iridium Extreme Satellite Phone

6The Iridium 9575 Extreme is the newest satellite phone currently available. Not only does the 9575 Extreme offer Iridium’s global coverage for voice, data and SMS but it is the first satellite phone to offer the fully integrated services of customizable GPS, online tracking and emergency SOS with notification services with the 2 in 1 design allowing you to carry one less piece of kit!

Who uses the Iridium Extreme? Mountain Guide Bruce Goodlad relies on his Extreme, see his review here:

http://www.globaltelesat.co.uk/blog/bruce-goodlad-review-of-iridium-9575-extreme

Iridium Extreme is available from £735 ex VAT

Have questions about any of our expedition kit? Give us a call on 01202 801290.

GEOS Alliance- International Emergency Response Coordination Center

Many of our devices have an SOS function on them including the Iridium Extreme, DeLorme inReach, DeLorme inReach SE and the SPOT devices; this means that if you find yourself in an emergency situation you can reach out for help. Once you press the SOS button on your device the message is sent to the GEOS Alliance and they alert the emergency services that are relevant to your location.

GEOS LogoThe GEOS International Emergency Response Coordination Center (IERCC) is the world’s first commercial global alerting post for Satellite Emergency Notification Devices (S.E.N.D.). All of our satellite devices that have an SOS function use GEOS in case of an emergency as it has the ability to provide real-time monitoring and response worldwide and is made up of various 24/7 monitoring centres that focus on travel safety, tracking, security services and emergency alerting for clients.

GEOS is an alerting post, meaning that when you press the SOS button on your satellite device they receive the alert and notify the appropriate authorities to perform a search and rescue mission. However, in many instances their duty doesn’t end there and the mission coordinators at the IERCC maintain a liaison with the family, first responders and in some instances a user’s embassy, keeping all parties up to date with the new position information, updated medical information and any other pertinent data until the mission or call is resolved.

GEOS understand that they are only as good as their partners and contacts and that is why they use the same COSPAS-SARSAT database that the Rescue Coordination Centre’s around the world have access to so they know exactly whom to call at all times (A Rescue Coordination Centre is a primary search and rescue facility in a country). They have also formed alliances with partners internationally, providing them access to resources that other organisations may not have access to. This can mean the difference of a few minutes, if not more, and when conducting a search and rescue mission this can mean the difference between life and death.

GEOS-RAF

GEOS are a truly global organisation and their coverage area is the entire world, or at least the part of the world that the various devices that they monitor can reach. GEOS have conducted rescues from as far North as the Arctic Sea to the very Southern tip of South America, coordinating search and rescue missions for everything from aircraft crashes to avalanches to piracy attempts.

GEOS services are delivered through a combination of state-of-the-art technology and the unparalleled experience of the very best and most respected specialists in the fields of International Search and Rescue (SAR) and worldwide emergency response. Since GEOS commenced operations in November 2007 it has rescued in excess of 3,500 people that may not have been here otherwise.

GEOS operates globally 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and 365 days a year and aid in the rescue of all saveable lives whether it is land, air or sea. Their motto is “So others may live to tell about it”.

Mountain guide Bruce Goodlad explains the importance of his Iridium 9575 Extreme satellite phone

Our customers use their satellite phones all over the world for many different reasons such as expeditions, sailing trips or business calls in remote locations.

Whether our customers use satellite phones frequently or as an emergency back-up only we are always interested to hear of how they use satellite technology to their advantage.

GTC customer Bruce Goodlad works as an international mountain guide.  We hear how he uses his Iridium 9575 Extreme satellite phone to stay connected even in the most remote places.

Iridium 9575 Extreme in use“As an international mountain guide I work in the high mountains all over the world, often in remote locations so communication is important to all aspects of my work. It is easy to focus on the accident and rescue element of satellite communications and miss the importance of good communication that allows the smooth running of a trip. Access to up to date weather reports and condition reports from other teams operating in your area all contribute to the success of a trip.

This is combined with the peace of mind that having guaranteed communication with rescue services provided by the Iridium network gives.

Iridium is the only truly global satellite phone network, I have used it all around the globe, phoning my mum from the summit of highest mountain in Antarctica to calling for a weather forecast while ski touring in a remote part of Kamchatka in Eastern Russia. Iridium keeps me up to date.

Iridium 9575 Extreme

Iridium Extreme satellite phone

The Iridium Extreme is so small and light that I just leave it in the bottom of my rucksack skiing and climbing everyday. In the Alps, where I live Cell phone coverage is good but it is a long way from complete.  Having an Iridium phone with me allows to keep up to date with weather and avalanche forecasts and conditions. It also allows me to arrange logistics where those relying on a cell phone may have no coverage. The SOS facility on the Extreme gives me the peace of mind that if I am injured even if my clients don’t have the language skills to call for help they can alert the rescue services to our situation.

I first used an Iridium phone in Antarctica in 2001 where I found it a major step forward in communication and safety provision, the new generation phone takes this security and portability to a new level. In the mountains I am never with out my Iridium, why trust your security to anything else?”

Bruce Goodlad

Mountain Guide IFMGA

Technical Director British Mountain Guides

Chamonix March 2013

www.mountainadventurecompany.com

Twitter: http://twitter.com/brucegoodlad

Find out more about the Iridium 9575 Extreme Satellite Phone

Iridium + GEOS… In An Emergency, Press That SOS Button

Iridium has announced the GEOS emergency response service is now available to Iridium Extreme satellite phone customers. At no additional cost to customers, Iridium has integrated the GEOS service into the SOS button on the Iridium Extreme. Launched in September 2011, the Iridium Extreme is the most advanced, rugged satellite phone in the market and is the first to offer an SOS button. As part of the Iridium ForceSM vision for future personal mobile communications, this GEOS service is an enhancement to the phone’s location-awareness services available at launch.

Iridium 9575 Extreme

The Iridium Extreme satellite phone - now with enhanced SOS services

This first-ever, integrated satellite phone emergency service sets the standard for providing ultimate peace of mind to lone workers and adventurers alike. A quick press of the SOS button automatically dials the GEOS emergency response center, providing a connection to a live support representative. Where the market used to settle for just one-way SOS alerting, customers now can maintain contact with the GEOS International Emergency Response Coordination Center (IERCC) during their emergency for reassurance that help is on the way. The GEOS service adds an important partner into the community supporting the Iridium Force vision. GEOS also adds a layer of performance to the dependable, reliable Iridium Extreme platform. GEOS receives emergency alerts and notifies Response Search and Rescue (SAR) authorities via a global, 24/7/365 service through its IERCC in Houston, Texas. The IERCC has translation capabilities for up to 200 languages. It has coordinated thousands of responses in more than 100 countries since 2007.

Iridium Extreme customers must register at www.geosalliance.com/iridium to initiate this emergency response service. Through the service, customers can verbally provide crisis details to SAR professionals, as well as send location data for response coordination with local public authorities. The Iridium Extreme SOS button functionality meets international standards for satellite emergency notification devices (SENDs). Although the GEOS service is included as an offering for Iridium Extreme customers who register, the programmable SOS button also can be set to instead call or message an alternate number. For instance, some corporations or organizations may prefer to have emergency calls routed to their internal response center or another SAR provider. There are no additional charges to access the basic GEOS service. Purchase of an Iridium Extreme phone and a valid subscription is required. Standard usage charges apply for the emergency phone call, or for SMS or location messages sent. Customers also can opt for enhanced, paid SAR or medevac subscriptions through GEOS.

“The GEOS service is one of the many new innovations we are delivering to partners,” said Joel Thompson, vice president, product management, Iridium. “Iridium worked with a select group of portal providers who developed location tracking and messaging services for the launch of the Iridium Extreme. Since then, the Iridium Extreme has seen much greater demand from customers than we had anticipated and we wanted to provide them an additional level of protection. With the launch of the GEOS Emergency Response service, Iridium Extreme customers now have several options to manage their communications during an emergency situation. Since the SOS button is programmable, customers have the ability to use the GEOS service if their organization does not offer such a service. We wanted to ensure that anyone using the most rugged satellite phone on the planet had an option to reach a highly trained professional in an emergency situation.”

“The GEOS IERCC has really raised the bar with respect to emergency response centers in terms of professionalism and reach,” said Mark Garver, CEO of the IERCC. “We staff it with qualified first responders, such as firefighters, paramedics, former military personnel and law enforcement professionals. These personnel have handled emergencies first hand. That is why we can truly stand by our motto, ‘So Others May Live To Tell About it’.”

First Apple iOS App Available on Iridium

Free Application Optimizes Email and Internet Services for Faster Data Speeds for iPhones, iPads and iPod Touches Anywhere in the World

Iridium Communications Inc. announces that its Iridium AxcessPoint Mail & Web App is now available for Apple operating system (iOS) devices. This development makes it possible for devices such as the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch to connect over the world’s furthest reaching communications network, Iridium.

The company launched the Iridium AxcessPoint Wi-Fi hotspot with BlackBerry support, as well as with apps for Mac and Windows laptops, in September 2011. With today’s app rollout, Iridium continues to expand the universe of smartphones that can now communicate on 90 percent of the planet not covered by traditional wireless networks.

“Iridium AxcessPoint Mail & Web now provides a reliable email and Internet connection anywhere in the world for the more than 250 million Apple iOS device users,” said Joel Thompson, vice president, product management, Iridium. “This first-of-its-kind capability embodies our Iridium Force vision — Iridium’s commitment to extending handheld connectivity in places never before possible and through devices customers already own. More and more we see enterprise, government and NGO organizations requiring connectivity for their employees regardless of their location on the planet.”

The Iridium AxcessPoint Wi-Fi hotspot accessory is a portable and lightweight modem that easily connects devices to Iridium using an Iridium Extreme or Iridium 9555 satellite phone. It is available through the global Iridium partner ecosystem with a suggested retail price of less than $200 (USD). The free Iridium AxcessPoint Mail & Web App for Apple devices is available on Apple’s iTunes store.

Iridium AxcessPoint app for Iridium Extreme & Iridium 9555 satellite phones

Iridium AxcessPoint Mail & Web App available now from the iTunes store

Iridium AxcessPoint Mail & Web features built-in firewall protection to block extraneous Internet traffic providing data speeds up to five times faster for web browsing and 15 times faster for email. This optimization software allows for offline viewing and composition of emails. It also enables configuration and filtering of large data files and attachments, as well as mid-file restart of attachment transfers if required.

Iridium AxcessPoint Mail & Web is part of the Iridium AxcessPoint suite of products. This Wi-Fi suite includes the Iridium AxcessPoint Wi-Fi hotspot accessory and the Iridium AxcessPoint Connect downloadable application. Iridium AxcessPoint Connect turns any Windows laptop into a global Wi-Fi hotspot when connected to an Iridium Extreme or Iridium 9555 satellite phone.

In order to use the Iridium AxcessPoint Wi-Fi hotspot accessory and Apple iOS app for Iridium AxcessPoint Mail & Web, users must have an Iridium 9555 or Iridium Extreme satellite phone with a valid subscription. Standard usage fees for airtime are charged. To purchase a satellite phone or Iridium AxcessPoint accessory, visit www.globaltelesat.co.uk. In addition, users should go to www.iridiumaxcesspoint.com to register for the Iridium AxcessPoint Mail & Web App and receive full set-up instructions for their device.

Introducing the new Iridium 9575 Extreme

Iridium 9575 Extreme

The new portable satellite phone from Iridium - 9575 Extreme

Iridium have today announced their new handset, the Iridium 9575 Extreme.  The new Iridium sat phone is built with the same reliable voice and data capability that users have come to trust from the only truly global satellite network.  In a world first this handset combines voice, data and SMS capabilities with the following new features:

  • GPS-enabled location-based services
  • SOS Emergency Button
  • Online Tracking
  • Accessories to create instant Wi-Fi hotspots

The Iridium 9575 Extreme will be available for £875 ex VAT from Global Telesat Communications.  Find out more at our website.