Satellite Phones - Irridium Vs Globalstar

Submitted: Monday, Apr 26, 2004 at 07:59
ThreadID: 12375 Views:1692 Replies:6 FollowUps:5
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Hi all,

I have been searching through many posts regarding Satellite Phones. So far the best deal seams to be the EBay R290 Phone at around $500 plus $200 connection fee & $33 per month. The Telstra/Irridium Motorola 9505 is $2000 plus a committed contract.

However in some earlier posts, some users on this forum absolutely canned the Global Star Network saying it was nowhere near as reliable as the Irridium Network !

Does anyone have any recent experience with the Globalstar Network ?

Thanks in advance
Phil P
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Reply By: Rosco - Bris. - Monday, Apr 26, 2004 at 08:05

Monday, Apr 26, 2004 at 08:05
Phil

I have an R290 which I've only used on a few occasions so far and it has worked faultlessly.

I reckon it's more of the old Tojo v Nissan rubbish.
AnswerID: 55949

Reply By: Member - peecee (VIC) - Monday, Apr 26, 2004 at 08:13

Monday, Apr 26, 2004 at 08:13
Hi Phil P
I have an r290 from ebay it works fine, will work on the passenger seat most of time. I guess you know that the r290 will only work on the globalstart/voda phone network .It would be handy if it would pickup telstra gsm network, as the voda phone network is limited .
AnswerID: 55952

Follow Up By: Rosscoe - Tuesday, Apr 27, 2004 at 14:12

Tuesday, Apr 27, 2004 at 14:12
I have an R290. Haven't connect to the Sat netwoerk but my Telstra Sim card works in it OK.
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FollowupID: 317985

Follow Up By: Member - peecee (VIC) - Thursday, Apr 29, 2004 at 08:20

Thursday, Apr 29, 2004 at 08:20
Hi Rosscoe
You are right ,any sim card will work with the phone,however if you want a satellite service you need a globalstar plan ,and that is only avalible with Vodaphone from what I understand.
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Reply By: Dave from Fraser Coast 4WD Club - Monday, Apr 26, 2004 at 09:06

Monday, Apr 26, 2004 at 09:06
I'll disagree.

IMHO the iridium network is far superior to the Globalstar.

case in point. You need to have a lock on thre satelites to call out with Globalstar, only one is required with iridium, so if you are in any sort of canopy, your chances of making a successful call is far reduced with Global star.

And then there's the recognised problem with linking to ground stations.

It is no secret that many of the hire companies got rid of their globalstars as soon as Iridium came back!

like I said, IMHO (and experience)
AnswerID: 55960

Follow Up By: Hedonist - Monday, Apr 26, 2004 at 10:40

Monday, Apr 26, 2004 at 10:40
Hi Dave,

Can you explain a bit more about the circumstances when you you have personaly had problems making calls on Globalstar?

Cheers,
Pete
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Follow Up By: Dave from Fraser Coast 4WD Club - Monday, Apr 26, 2004 at 11:26

Monday, Apr 26, 2004 at 11:26
Yep, two examples. Fraser Island and a property we usd to use near (but not near enough for GSM or CDMA) Childers.

Anytime we'd enter more than say (guessing) 30-40% canopy, the phone would not work.

(neither would an NEC S2 for that matter).

Iridium works better, (not much chop in full canopy however).

We did not hire globalstar again, but were offered one at a good price once Iridium came back.

At the end of the day, I hope that you are all happy with your globalstars!
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FollowupID: 317848

Follow Up By: Hedonist - Monday, Apr 26, 2004 at 11:49

Monday, Apr 26, 2004 at 11:49
Thanks Dave,

I did the eBay R290 deal a few weeks ago as well, but so far have only used it in open areas - still exploring the limitations.

Cheers,
Pete
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FollowupID: 317851

Reply By: Member - Bob - Monday, Apr 26, 2004 at 10:09

Monday, Apr 26, 2004 at 10:09
Phil
I just got back from two weeks away. Drove from home near ACT to Broome. Globalstar was faultless. Always found network quickly, no dropouts. I thought for $500 it would be pretty hard to beat. Can't say we struck a lot of foliage though.
AnswerID: 55977

Reply By: Phil P - Monday, Apr 26, 2004 at 10:40

Monday, Apr 26, 2004 at 10:40
Thanks for the feedback,

Just purchased the R290 from Ebay

Phil P
AnswerID: 55987

Reply By: Niko - Friday, Apr 30, 2004 at 02:31

Friday, Apr 30, 2004 at 02:31
Iridium is said to be a better system in many respects, but it is the only sat system that is truly worldwide, so if you decide to go further than Cape York and hit the Himalayas then you gotta think about what is going to be the main reason for purchase. I'd say it's to save your life at the most crucial moment. If you need more info on Iridium go to www.octapc.com
AnswerID: 56665

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