Wednesday, 18 April 2018

Stay Connected During your Aussie Adventures

Aussies are known to be an adventurous bunch and have always loved to explore our great country. Typically the best way we know how to explore our land is to travel in 4x4’s, caravans or trekking across the remote wilderness.  One thing that you will find out very quickly whilst travelling across the vast terrain, is that your mobile phone is basically rendered useless once you travel outside our major capital and regional centres. Most mobile networks cover 98% -99% of the population, which is great, however in land mass this equates to only around 20% of Australia having mobile coverage, the other 80% where you need communications even more, has nothing.

Of course, there is radio, either UHF or HF. UHF is pretty inexpensive and easy to use, however even with a 5watt system the signal at best only carriers 17km. In the outback, most properties are bigger than that. HF carries further however is very expensive to install, at around $3,000 - $6,000 and most people find it very difficult to use and still doesn’t work EVERYWHERE.

For this reason, there is a genuine need for most travellers to have a satellite phone for use on their trip and to have that peace of mind.  To know that you will have a reliable source of communication for emergencies and life-threatening situations is crucial.  Even just to keep in touch with your loved ones and keep up with those important footy scores doesn’t make you feel isolated.

There are a few different choices out there when it comes to satellite phones, and like mobile phones, coverage is key. You want to go with the network that offers the best coverage possible, as there is no point really having a satellite phone if you can’t get a signal when you need it.  SatPhone Shop is supported by the Iridium network.  Iridium is the ONLY satellite network provider that offers 100% global coverage, so you can’t get better than that!

The Iridium network operates a LEO (Low Earth Orbiting) satellite constellation.  It consists of 66 moving satellites, about 800km in orbit. From a usage perspective, one of the important things of a LEO constellation is that they enable satellite phones to be designed with omni-directional antennas.  This offers great coverage even in hilly areas and the most rugged of terrain, always giving you 100% global satellite coverage.

The important thing to remember when using a satellite phone is the phone must be able to see the satellite and vice versa. You must be outside with a clear view of the sky (unless your using an external antenna) to make and receive calls.

If you happen to be in a deep gully or valley with high cliffs either side, this may affect the phone getting a good satellite signal.  If possible, you would climb higher up to increase your chance of getting a better coverage. The benefit of Iridium and their 66 satellites is they are always moving, so even in a bad location, there will be times a satellite will be overhead to enable you to make a call or send an SMS.  This could be a real life saver compared to a geostationary satellite, where you only have access to one satellite, so if you don’t have signal where you are, you will never have a signal.

As many people may only travel for a brief period of time, maybe once a year, but do not want to invest into buying a satellite phone.  A less expensive option is to rent a satellite phone for as little or as long as you need. Renting gives you all the benefits and peace of mind of having a satellite phone, without the investment and ongoing costs of owning a satellite, so is certainly a very popular option of many people.

SatPhone Rentals, a subsidiary of SatPhone Shop, offer the cheapest rental rates around and offer the full range of Iridium phones with 100% satellite coverage on the Iridium network. SatPhone Rentals can advise you of a calling solution that will meet your needs whether post-paid or pre-paid, there is a plan that is right for you. Renting a satellite phone is also a terrific way to try before you really couldn't be any easier than that.

A satphone rental can start from as little as $7 per day with 3 different handsets to choose from and all phones come in a water proof protective hard case to keep everything safe and dry!  SatPhone Rentals offer additional accessories like external antennas and extra batteries in case you need them and you also have a choice to get insurance to protect you from loss or theft of your satellite phone rental.

SatPhone Rentals, offer one of the largest fleets of satellite phones to ensure availability of phones, when you need it.  SatPhone Rentals delivers phones anywhere in Australia from Melbourne to Nhulunbuy to Oodnadatta to Carnarvan via Express Post.  A self-addressed Express Post envelope is even provided for you to return the phone, it couldn’t be easier!  With a low minimum 3-day rental for phones you can rent for as long as you like. SatPhone Rentals also offer Post Paid SIM cards which are available for rent for a minimum of 7 days or Pre-paid cards starting at 30 days with 75 minutes of call credit for a low $175.

Typically, you will receive your satphone rental within 2-3 working days depending on where you’re located. If you are in Melbourne, then you are welcome to come to our showroom and collect a phone for those last-minute trips.

All phones are fully tested prior to shipping, so you can have peace of mind.

If you are going off the beaten track in your 4x4 and require a truly ruggedized phone that is shock resistant, dust proof and jet water resistant, then the Iridium Extreme® 9575 is the one for you.  This phone is built for the toughest of conditions, it has lots of features and accessories like real time tracking, GPS enabled, SOS emergency distress at no additional charge.  You can add a magnetic antenna to your kit so there is no need to pull over to use your satellite phone, you will always be connected.

If you need a satellite phone to have in your caravan for that peace of mind, but do not need all the extra features that the Extreme® offers, an Iridium 9555 satellite phone is designed to go easily wherever you go.  The Iridium 9555 offers call and text capabilities and an internally stowed antenna making this a sleek portable option.

And for those who just can’t bare to be without their smartphones, the Iridium GO! is one of our most popular devices.  The Iridium GO! is a compact and portable, yet rugged satellite backed Wi-Fi hotspot.  Just download the free Iridium GO! app and you can turn your smart phone into a satellite phone. This great little device can also connect up to 5 smart devices whether it is a smart phone or tablet (for Apple and Android users), making this a great option for people traveling in groups.  The Iridium GO! is small enough to fit in your pocket or stowed away in your backpack, with the bonus addition of being able to support a range of communications, including GPS tracking and email access.

SatPhone Shop’s foundation is built on having some of the best employees in the industry, with years of satellite telecommunication experience from sales and marketing right across to engineering and excellent customer support.  

Let us assist you with your satellite communication needs, call now on 1300 368 611.

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