Calling it a "game-changer, Inmarsat has launched its new global handheld satellite phone, the IsatPhone Pro.
With promotional incentives, some IsatPhones could cost below $600.
IsatPhone Pro “We have today entered the handheld satellite phone market with a global handset," said Inmarsat Chairman and CEO Andrew Sukawaty. "It targets customers served by Inmarsat for decades, both at sea and in the most remote parts of the global landmass. It is supported by our existing satellite network and it uses proven technology customized for use in these environments.
The company said the phone is rugged and splash- and dust-proof, and it claims the market’s longest battery life and most robust handset.
It offers up to eight hours talk time and up to 100 hours on standby. The handset has secured an IP54 rating and is dust-, splash- and shock-resistant. It operates from -20 degrees C (-4 F) to +55 degrees C (131 F).
Targeted primarily at professional users in the government, media, aid, oil and gas, mining and construction sectors, IsatPhone Pro offers high-quality satellite telephony, text and e-mail messaging. Location data can also be viewed and sent in a text message.
The design of IsatPhone Pro, including a fully-maneuvrable antenna, allows the handset to be placed on its side for easy hands-free use via Bluetooth. IsatPhone Pro has an intuitive GSM-style interface with a high-visibility color screen, and a larger keypad for easy dialing in gloves.
“IsatPhone Pro will undoubtedly shake-up the global handheld market,” said Helen Stalker, Commercial Director for Global Satellite Phone Services at Inmarsat. “It’s the best overall proposition in the market. It meets all the fundamental user requirements and Inmarsat provides the best channel support in the industry. We have worked with the best developers, manufacturers and logistics providers to bring IsatPhone Pro to market. And through our 13 distribution partners worldwide, the levels of customer service and support are unrivaled”.
It uses a 2.4 Kbps voice codec and promises "competitive" pricing through its resellers. The distribution partners are AST, China Telecom, Evosat, Korea Telecom, MCN, MVS, Network Innovations, NSSL, RRSat, Satcom Global, Singtel, Stratos and Vizada.
More details, and the full specification--and a cool video showing the IsatPhone's use--are available at www.inmarsat.com/isatphone.
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