IMPORTANT Message to all Thuraya sat phone users

Reuters: Libya has warned that anyone found using a Thuraya satellite phone without a permit would be charged with collaborating with the enemy and as a spy for NATO and may face the death penalty. Therefore, please make sure you carry a permit allowing its use according to the laws and regulations in force.

 

Thuraya SG-2520 Price Reduction

We have just dropped the price Thuraya SG-2520 from £680 to £525 (ex VAT.)

Visit our Thuraya SG-2520 page for the latest price drop and more information or call +44-1202 607 486.

About the Thuraya SG-2520: The Thuraya SG-2520 satellite phone is the world’s smallest and lightest dual-mode sat phone offering both satellite and GSM coverage. In satellite phone mode the Thuraya SG-2520 allows you to communicate across more than one third of the globe. When outside of the Thuraya coverage area you can also use the satellite phone to access GSM networks using your Thuraya satellite SIM card or using a regular GSM SIM card. Unlike older sat phones, the Thuraya SG-2520 offers a range of features similar to a GSM phone such as a camera, in built web browsing, colour display, GPS waypoint tracking and Bluetooth connectivity. The Thuraya SG-2520 provides an excellent solution for users who want flexibility in the way they communicate using their satellite phone.

Satellite phone or personal tracker waterproof cases are now available in our shop

Protect your satellite phone or personal tracker from water, sand, dirt or dust with these waterproof cases while giving you full use of your phone.

Compatible with:

  • Thuraya XT

  • Thuraya SG-2520

  • Iridium 9555

  • IsatPhone Pro

  • SHOUT nano

  • SPOT Satellite GPS Messenger

Using Iridium and Thuraya satellite phones for data connection

For those who frequently require internet connection in remote locations using a satellite terminal on the Inmarsat BGAN satellite network is a good choice with their portable terminals, fast data speeds and very reliable service.

But what about those who will only occasionally want to use a data connection while in remote locations?  It is little known that satellite phones can also provide data services.  Although the speed will not be as fast as Inmarsat BGAN, if you only require need data services every now and then, a satellite phone will suffice and will be a much cheaper alternative to BGAN.  Every Iridium and Thuraya sat phone that we stock is capable of sending emails directly from the phone and the Thuraya SG-2520 even has an in-built browser meaning you don’t need to connect to your laptop to use the internet.

Iridium offers a data speed of 9.6kbps and each Iridium 9555 comes with a USB cable to connect to your laptop making data connections with your sat phone very simple.  Thuraya’s basic data service offers speeds of up to 9.6kbps.  However, their GmPRS service offers enhanced speeds of up to 60kbps (downlink) at an additional fee making data connections with your satellite phone more viable.  With GmPRS you are charged by the volume of data you send and receive rather than the duration of the data call (as is the case with Thuraya’s basic data service).  Uplink speeds are available at up to 15kbps.  The GmPRS service is available on both post-paid and pre-paid data SIM cards.

As with Iridium phones, all Thuraya phones come with the data cables required to set-up your data connection quickly and easily. 

So if you need to send and receive emails or browse the web while on the move a satellite phone could be just what you need.  If you are not sure whether a sat phone or a satellite terminal would best  suit your needs why not contact us with your questions?

Satellite Phones vs Cell Phones

What is the difference between a satellite phone and a cell phone?  Cell phones rely on terrestrial networks to complete a call whereas satellite phones rely on orbiting satellites – the satellite is the equivalent of a cell phone mast.  This means that sat phones are ideal for individuals travelling in remote locations where there is no cell phone coverage.  It also means that satellite phones are essential in case of emergency such as a hurricane or earthquake – often the local cell phone infrastructure is destroyed which makes calls by cell phone impossible.

 

Although call costs are more expensive using a satellite phone when you are in an area with no traditional communication methods, sat phones are vital.  As this map from GSM World shows, there are still vast regions of the world that aren’t covered by GSM networks.  Compare this with the Iridium satellite phone network which provides global coverage and you can see how useful satellite phones are.

 

GSM World Coverage 2009 from GSM World

GSM World Coverage 2009 from GSM World

Another difference between satellite phones and cell phones are the handsets used.  Satellite phones have a built in extendable antenna which allows the phone to pick up a satellite signal.  Apart from the extendable antenna the handsets are now very similar in size and weight to cell phones making them very easy to carry when travelling.

It is possible to combine the advantages of GSM and satellite networks in one handset.  Thuraya SIM cards allow you to roam on compatible GSM networks when in their coverage area.  Even better, the Thuraya SG-2520 functions with both a Thuraya SIM card and GSM SIM card with no phone unlocking required.  This means that when you are in a GSM coverage area you can use a local SIM card reducing call costs and meaning you only need to carry one handset.

Satellite phones and cell phones both have their advantages but for communication in remote locations a sat phone is the best option.

Thuraya GPS Navigation

It is well known that Thuraya phones are brilliant for helping you to keep in touch in remote locations through voice and data services.  A lesser known feature of the Thuraya phones is their ability to store and transmit geographical co-ordinates by GPS.

With the Thuraya GPS navigation feature, you are able to locate your position anytime, anywhere within the Thuraya coverage area or compatible GSM coverage area.  Once you have acquired the co-ordinates you can:

  1. Save co-ordinates on your Thuraya phone for later reference.
  2. Send co-ordinates by SMS to another phone.
  3. Send co-ordinates by SMS to the ThurayaLocate service.

The ThurayaLocate service is offered free of charge by Thuraya in connection with UK based location and risk management experts Geonix.  Simply register for a free account and you will then be prompted to enter the Thuraya phone number of the device you wish to track – you can set up as many devices on the account as you like.  Once you have set-up the account you can then view the co-ordinates you acquire from your Thuraya handset on the ThurayaLocate website.

thuraya-gps

An example of co-ordinate information shown on the ThurayaLocate website

 

How do I send my co-ordinates to ThurayaLocate?

You acquire your co-ordinates through the Navigation menu of your handset.  You can either choose to transmit your current position or historical positions you have saved as waypoints.  Once you have selected the waypoint you require you then choose “Send via SMS” from the menu, send to +278388918342 (dedicated ThurayaLocate number) and your co-ordinates will instantly show up on your ThurayaLocate account map.  Date and time information is also transmitted.  The ThurayaLocate service will also work when you are roaming on GSM networks and the only cost the user will incur in either satellite or GSM mode is the cost of the SMS to ThurayaLocate – this will vary depending on your airtime plan, please check before using if you are unsure.

ThurayaLocate is especially useful for users travelling in remote locations – simply share your log-in details with family and friends and they will be able to keep up to date with your journey progress.