iPhone 13 will get satellite communications in just a few markets

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Comments

  • Reply 21 of 34
    LEO's are looking at 6W in the one 'n a half gig range, too much power for side of the head operation... LEO's can op down to 15 degrees off the horizon but full duplex data rates are crap... and that takes rcvrs that'll go 135dB down. simplex'll work ter2sat... SPOT is doing that now.
  • Reply 22 of 34
    entropysentropys Posts: 3,143member
    mobird said:
    Has no one seen a movie where some character is in some extreme remote location and brings out the "Sat" phone? A "Sat" phone is approximately the size of a brick (literally) and has about a 10" external antenna. The iPhone may have the required transmit / receive power but the antenna system maybe a problem...
    My iridium phone is the size of a Nokia 1110 and the antenna is about the size of a thumb.  It is also about ten years old, and it was already a very old design when I bought it. 
  • Reply 23 of 34
    Whatever this turns out to be or not to be, it’s good to know “famed analyst” Ming Chi Kuo is now a straight up celebrity. 
  • Reply 24 of 34
    crowleycrowley Posts: 8,819member
    cornchip said:
    Pretty badass if true. F the carriers. 
    Unless Apple have a satellite network that I'm unaware of, you're still going to need a carrier, it just might be a different one from those you're used to.
  • Reply 25 of 34
    GG1GG1 Posts: 454member
    JFC_PA said:
    thompr said:
    I wonder how this will work, since all the satellite services I know of require a dish — which is certainly not portable equipment.  

    Also I wonder how much this service would cost, and whether it’s a first step to introducing an Apple cell carrier, which I would think would be an almost guaranteed success if service isn’t awful.

    Certainly Apple’s level of customer loyalty is far, far higher than Verizon’s will ever be.
    All of the satellite services that require dishes use satellites in Geosynchronous orbit, which is approximately 40,000 km out from Earth's center.  Low earth orbit is 2,000 km or less, meaning 1/20th of the distance... translating to 1/400th of the power requirements (each way).  Still, it would be quite a feat to make the uplink work.
    Check out the size of a Garmin InReach mini. The thing is tiny. 

    Very interesting device. I noticed it is only for text messages, not voice. This device uses the Iridium network, which limits texts to 160 characters.

    I think the key to making the uplink work from a phone is to keep the text message short and SLOW. That reduces the bandwidth needed and improves the signal-to-noise (Shannon's Law?), so a small handheld device can reliably send to a satellite. And some exotic material would be needed to shrink that antenna to fit inside the housing (metamaterials).
  • Reply 26 of 34
    If there is a satellite SMS service in the new iPhone, or any future iPhone, most likely the iPhone itself will refuse to use that service unless you already have a carrier contract from approved carriers, since it's the carrier that will foot the bill for the satellite service. So it's not only country-specific, it's also carrier-specific. But note that the satellites may be owned by a different company than your wireless provider and your carrier will probably pay that company for each text that you send via satellite.

    Another thing is that if you try to send an SMS message outside the region supported by your carrier, your iPhone will almost certainly attempt for a roaming (chargeable) SMS message before trying the satellites (99.9% of the US population is covered by at least one wireless carrier.) So it will be hard to even test the satellite feature. I suppose remote areas of Alaska, Hawaii and Montana will benefit the most from Satellite coverage.

    There may also be a limit to the number of times per month that can send/receive a satellite text message. So if you live in some remote part of Alaska and like to send 100 text messages per day, forget it.

    Also note that plain SMS messages are not encrypted, so it's entirely possible that this new "emergency SMS" service will be monitored and non-emergency messages will just be deleted. At least for people who abuse the system.
  • Reply 27 of 34
    thompr said:
    I wonder how this will work, since all the satellite services I know of require a dish — which is certainly not portable equipment.  

    Also I wonder how much this service would cost, and whether it’s a first step to introducing an Apple cell carrier, which I would think would be an almost guaranteed success if service isn’t awful.

    Certainly Apple’s level of customer loyalty is far, far higher than Verizon’s will ever be.
    All of the satellite services that require dishes use satellites in Geosynchronous orbit, which is approximately 40,000 km out from Earth's center.  Low earth orbit is 2,000 km or less, meaning 1/20th of the distance... translating to 1/400th of the power requirements (each way).  Still, it would be quite a feat to make the uplink work.
    There are portable phones that don't require dishes that use satellites in Geosynchronous orbit. The one I've used on several occasions up in Alaska is by Inmarsat. From my understanding, all of Inmarsat's satellites are up in Geosynchronous orbit. 
  • Reply 28 of 34
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 23,245member
    thompr said:
    I wonder how this will work, since all the satellite services I know of require a dish — which is certainly not portable equipment.  

    Also I wonder how much this service would cost, and whether it’s a first step to introducing an Apple cell carrier, which I would think would be an almost guaranteed success if service isn’t awful.

    Certainly Apple’s level of customer loyalty is far, far higher than Verizon’s will ever be.
    All of the satellite services that require dishes use satellites in Geosynchronous orbit, which is approximately 40,000 km out from Earth's center.  Low earth orbit is 2,000 km or less, meaning 1/20th of the distance... translating to 1/400th of the power requirements (each way).  Still, it would be quite a feat to make the uplink work.
    There are portable phones that don't require dishes that use satellites in Geosynchronous orbit. The one I've used on several occasions up in Alaska is by Inmarsat. From my understanding, all of Inmarsat's satellites are up in Geosynchronous orbit. 
    Well, yeah, obviously satellites would be in orbit. :smile: 
    But no, I believe Inmarsat also has a terrestrial service and referring to it as  "Orchestra". If you were using a typical phone my only-semi-educated guess is it was likely that service rather than by geosynchronous satellite contact.
    edited September 7
  • Reply 29 of 34
    If there is a satellite SMS service in the new iPhone, or any future iPhone, most likely the iPhone itself will refuse to use that service unless you already have a carrier contract from approved carriers, since it's the carrier that will foot the bill for the satellite service. So it's not only country-specific, it's also carrier-specific. But note that the satellites may be owned by a different company than your wireless provider and your carrier will probably pay that company for each text that you send via satellite.

    Another thing is that if you try to send an SMS message outside the region supported by your carrier, your iPhone will almost certainly attempt for a roaming (chargeable) SMS message before trying the satellites (99.9% of the US population is covered by at least one wireless carrier.) So it will be hard to even test the satellite feature. I suppose remote areas of Alaska, Hawaii and Montana will benefit the most from Satellite coverage.

    There may also be a limit to the number of times per month that can send/receive a satellite text message. So if you live in some remote part of Alaska and like to send 100 text messages per day, forget it.

    Also note that plain SMS messages are not encrypted, so it's entirely possible that this new "emergency SMS" service will be monitored and non-emergency messages will just be deleted. At least for people who abuse the system.
    The majority of the US population lives in cities, so that's why you get 99% of the population covered. There are remote areas in so many states where you could test the satellite feature. The majority of National Parks for example, don't have cell coverage outside of visitor center areas. Pretty much any state that has mountains, you will be in an area with no cell phone coverage. 
    fastasleep
  • Reply 30 of 34
    Going back to at least 2013 Apple and Boeing were partnering on developing a satellite network.
    edited September 7
  • Reply 31 of 34
    Could this be referencing Galileo's SAR (Search and Rescue) capability?   Is Qualcomm /. Apple adding support for that?

  • Reply 32 of 34
    Here's an overview of Galileo SAR.  It seems to fit the details mentioned:  for emergency use, limited to Europe / high latitudes, and basic return service.

    https://gssc.esa.int/navipedia/index.php/Galileo_Search_and_Rescue_Service

    gatorguymuthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 33 of 34
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 23,245member
    Here's an overview of Galileo SAR.  It seems to fit the details mentioned:  for emergency use, limited to Europe / high latitudes, and basic return service.

    https://gssc.esa.int/navipedia/index.php/Galileo_Search_and_Rescue_Service

    I like seeing members do research. Thanks for the link!
    muthuk_vanalingamMisterKit
  • Reply 34 of 34
    I think satellite services might one day be an option but provided by existing satellite service providers  as Elon musk has been under fire for littering the skies with those mini satellites . Its a logistical nightmare in orbit around the earth as it is. I’m sure Apple with its eco friendly products would  not to one day have people taking pictures or  the night sky on their phones in awe at such s feature is finally available ti the average joe with s smartphone and then the disappointment  to find that the constellations are all man made 
    Imagine thinking any of this were true. 
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