Traveling is a joy. It’s always a delight to go to new places, have new experiences, and brave the outdoors. Although as much as it is a joy, there are minor inconveniences every now and then.
One such inconvenience that can quickly rise to a matter of safety is phone signal. Sometimes we travel to places with poor or unreliable reception. Especially after typhoon Odette ravaged cellphone towers in Visayas, certain areas still have no cell signal.
The Satellite Phone, or Satphone as others call it, is an excellent solution to this concern. Satphones are reliable communication devices that work just like a keypad phone, except not having to rely on cell towers for signal.
Satellite phones typically work in any geographical area on Earth at any time while you are outdoors.
Emergency calls and location tracker
When our phones can’t find cell signal, we see the warning, “Emergency Calls” only. This means that the phone cannot find signal for your SIM, but emergency calls can still be made by connecting to the next available network tower. Think of it like hitching a ride.
But what if there absolutely no other network towers to hitch a ride on? What if you find yourself traveling to a remote area in the wilderness or in the mountains? Your phone becomes completely useless in this case, and satellite phones will be your saving grace.
Satphones transmit and receive signals via satellites orbiting the earth. Your text or call is sent directly to the nearest satellite, which then sends that signal to the nearest land-based center (gateway), and then the gateway transmits that signal to the receiving phone. This receiving device can be a landline phone, a cellphone, or a satphone.
Most satphones also come with a built-in GPS tracker or a location sender. This allows the would-be recipient of your message to know your general area and will make locating or even rescuing you so much faster.
Coverage over wide locations
A satphone’s biggest benefit is that it is not limited to areas covered by cell towers; it can be used in most geographic locations on the Earth’s surface. As long as you are outdoors, near a window, or under a thin-roofed shelter, the satphone will be reliably usable.
Most satellite phones have near-worldwide coverage, expensive models have global service, while selected satphones have limited area coverage. So, if you’re planning to travel locally, the cheaper models with coverage near the equator will suffice.
A satellite phone is a great investment if you plan to engage in plenty of maritime activities and far inland adventures.
Where to purchase your satphone
There are various service providers and sellers for satellite phones now in the Philippines, from online international traders to local sellers. Even Smart Communications has launched their own satellite phone. There are many places to look, and here are a few to get you started:
- Smart Communications, Inc. has a package starting at ₱38,500: https://smart.com.ph/Satellite/smart-sat/plans-and-rates
- Inmarsat IsatPhone 2 (near global coverage): https://satellitephonestore.com/catalog/sale/details/inmarsat-isatphone-2-satellite-phone-kit-322
- Iridium Extreme 9575 (global coverage): https://satellitephonestore.com/catalog/sale/details/iridium-9575-extreme-satellite-phone-kit-7
- Globalstar GSP-1700 (near global coverage): https://www.globalstar.com/en-us/products/voice-and-data/gsp-1700-mobile-satellite-phone
- Online selling platforms Shopee and Lazada also has listings for satellite phones.
We recommend that everyone considers purchasing a satellite phone. Even when staying at home, satphones can be highly crucial for communication during times of calamity or disasters. It’s definitely another tool that helps ensure your safety at any time.