iridium sat phone

Submitted: Saturday, Jul 30, 2016 at 09:43
ThreadID: 133115 Views:3859 Replies:9 FollowUps:18
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I have an Irridium sat phone they we own.
It was previously using a Telstra simm, monthly account of $35 per month.
we cancelled the plan after years of lack of use, but when we cancelled the plan, we were told that there are providers who can sell us a prepaid solution?
Any clues? We are trying to avoid a plan, but want to use the phone when travelling?
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Reply By: Member - William B (The Shire) - Saturday, Jul 30, 2016 at 10:43

Saturday, Jul 30, 2016 at 10:43
Hi Jim B8,
I use a Pivotel sim which uses a Australian number which allows people to call you for a standard mobile rate.
$15 a month.
William
Always planning the next trip. VKS-737 mobile 1619

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Follow Up By: Member - Boobook - Saturday, Jul 30, 2016 at 14:59

Saturday, Jul 30, 2016 at 14:59
Hi William, can you please point me to that plan. The cheapest I can find is $20 per month and $3.30 per 30 seconds on Pivotal for Iridium..$110 registration.

The plan you describe sounds attractive
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Follow Up By: Member - William B (The Shire) - Saturday, Jul 30, 2016 at 17:01

Saturday, Jul 30, 2016 at 17:01
Hi, this is the plan I am on.

http://www.pivotel.com.au/thuraya-plans.php

I assumed that the plan was available for all sat. phones

William
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Follow Up By: TomH - Saturday, Jul 30, 2016 at 17:58

Saturday, Jul 30, 2016 at 17:58
Arent Thuraya and Iridium different and use different satellites
http://www.thegreynomads.com.au/accessories/communication-gadgets/satellite-phone-networks/
Info on $10 plan
https://forums.whirlpool.net.au/archive/2529521
If you try for the casual accelerate plan at Telstra only go to a proper Telstra shop (Lots are agencies) ask for it but DONT tell them its for a Satfone.
Has been lots of discussion on other travel forums and this was the way people got it. If you say Satfone they will say no it wont work It does.

I have followed this subject now for 9 years and have never ever found anyone who managed to get a Prepaid Telstra sim to work in a Satfone (including me when I had one)
I also found friends on other Cellular networks could not send me texts even though I could send them one from the satfone.
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Reply By: brianH - Saturday, Jul 30, 2016 at 12:01

Saturday, Jul 30, 2016 at 12:01
Hi Jim try to get a $10 monthy mobile casual accelerate plan from telstra which you have to ask for and not every telstra place know about it. Cost me $120 a year and saves reconnecting on a part time plan which may not be a lot cheaper. You may cancel at anytime with no penalty but calls are a lot dearer than the $30 plan but I have had mine for 7 years and only had to use it once. cheers,
BRIAN
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Follow Up By: Member - hopbush - Saturday, Jul 30, 2016 at 13:26

Saturday, Jul 30, 2016 at 13:26
I explored the $10 per month plan some time ago and was told by telstra that to qualify for that plan I had to already have an existing telstra account be it phone or Internet or whatever. It was no easy matter either as stated in the above thread because most telstra staff had never heard of it.
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Reply By: Member - RobnJane(VIC) - Saturday, Jul 30, 2016 at 16:26

Saturday, Jul 30, 2016 at 16:26
Hello Jim,

Unless I am missing something here, and assuming you are still with Telstra for other mobiles you can now simply insert the sim from your mobile into the sat phone, and you are set.
You will need to enable international roaming and maybe use an adaptor on your sim to ensure your mini sim from the mobile fits the Iridium.
No need for other plan but any calls are at sat ph rates.
This has worked for us for a few years now.
Rgds,
Rob
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Follow Up By: Life Member - Mike (SA) - Saturday, Jul 30, 2016 at 19:19

Saturday, Jul 30, 2016 at 19:19
I agree with RobJane.
I employ the same system and it works seamlessly by just moving the SIM card from mobile to sat phone. We have the Iridium 9505A which has the SMS (text) facility. Those messages are charged at national rate.
I have seen some have referred to the Thuraya network. I believe they still only have one satellite stationary over Singapore and access from East Coast can be a problem. Regards, Mike
Too little time in the bush!
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Follow Up By: Member - Boobook - Monday, Aug 01, 2016 at 06:43

Monday, Aug 01, 2016 at 06:43
I used to do this.

A note for those considering it.
While it technically works great, it can end up being very expensive and or you can't leave you phone on and have someone call you. It is useful as a last resort call out standby only though.

Because all and sundry are calling your mobile number and Calling line ID doesn't work well, you have to answer the phone to see who is calling you. BANG $4.00.
If you leave your phone off, as soon as you turn it on you get a bunch of missed call texts at $1.50 ea.

Great for last resort comms, but not for the next level up of use. That would be the $10 plan or some dedicated satellite plan.
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Reply By: Member - Jim B8 - Saturday, Jul 30, 2016 at 18:02

Saturday, Jul 30, 2016 at 18:02
thanks all, some homework to do here, I have so many leads, thanks all. A great result
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Follow Up By: TomH - Saturday, Jul 30, 2016 at 18:14

Saturday, Jul 30, 2016 at 18:14
If you still have a cell on contract with Telstra Just swap it over and tell your friends not to ring you unless needed as it will cost $4 a minute both in and out. If not have a read of my reply to prev post.
Can be done with persistance
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Reply By: dean ( SA ) - Saturday, Jul 30, 2016 at 18:36

Saturday, Jul 30, 2016 at 18:36
As of April 2016 the Telstra Accelerator was plan was made unavailable.
Hands up if you have been able to sign up after then.
AnswerID: 602963

Follow Up By: Shaker - Sunday, Jul 31, 2016 at 08:40

Sunday, Jul 31, 2016 at 08:40
I signed up for a $10 plan for my sat phone 10 days ago. Had to do it direct with Telstra on the phone, our local Telstra shop said it had been discontinued.
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Follow Up By: dean ( SA ) - Sunday, Jul 31, 2016 at 09:34

Sunday, Jul 31, 2016 at 09:34
Excellent mate I will try again for umpteenth time.
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Follow Up By: Pete Jackman (SA) - Sunday, Jul 31, 2016 at 15:53

Sunday, Jul 31, 2016 at 15:53
I was given this number to call to access the $10 casual plan by a helpful Telstra lady:

1800 732 728

As I wasn't a telstra customer and wanted international roaming I had to deposit $300, so no more payments for the next 2.5 years!

Cheers

Pete
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Follow Up By: Zippo - Sunday, Jul 31, 2016 at 20:37

Sunday, Jul 31, 2016 at 20:37
Pete, if they asked for a deposit/pre-payment for IR then it sounds very much like you are on a PRE-paid plan. It is my clear understanding (and verified with my own testing) that a SIM for a Telstra pre-paid service does not work in an Iridium satphone.

The only Telstra $10 post-paid plan that I am aware of is the "Mobile Accelerate Casual Plan". If your plan has any other name, you may have the wrong one.

(ANY Telstra post-paid plan SIM with IR enabled will work in an Iridium satphone, but to date everyone's testing with pre-paid - including mine - has been unsuccessful).
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Follow Up By: Pete Jackman (SA) - Sunday, Jul 31, 2016 at 22:48

Sunday, Jul 31, 2016 at 22:48
Nope Zippo, definitely post paid, the deposit was only for international roaming because I had not been a Telstra customer for a few years prior. I guess they have been burnt by people getting a cheap sim, racking up a big bill then walking.

Now I have used up the deposit I'm post paying monthly bills (except for the next few months after the local tower was storm damaged and we lost signal for 7 days and received a $40 credit!)

And it definitely works in my Iridium 9555

:o)

Cheers

Pete
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Follow Up By: Zippo - Monday, Aug 01, 2016 at 00:11

Monday, Aug 01, 2016 at 00:11
All good, Pete. I have never been bitten by the requirement for IR prepayment, but as I've been a Telstra landline account-holder since before the days of mobile phones, I guess I have a payment history to satisfy them.
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Reply By: brianH - Monday, Aug 01, 2016 at 20:07

Monday, Aug 01, 2016 at 20:07
Hi Jim my friend does things a bit diffrently, he has a irridium 9505a i think and uses a telstra sim from another phone to his sat phone for out of range calls and has brought a gme plb for $300 to use in an emergency and intends to transfer the sim to from his mobile phone
to his satphone should he need other communications. So when you look at it after the initial outlay of $300 there are no other costs except for call costs should he need to use the satphone . Brian
AnswerID: 603022

Follow Up By: Member - Jim B8 - Tuesday, Aug 02, 2016 at 06:22

Tuesday, Aug 02, 2016 at 06:22
Brian
interesting, a few people suggested this, using the simm from the mobile phone. I hadnt thought of that, and would have bet that it wouldnt work, but there you go. I will try it this weekend. Apparently I might need an adaptor form micro simm to simm, but they are easy to get, seems to be just a plastic frame? I am told the cost per call is a lot higher using this method, but we only use it in emergency so no matter. We witnessed a crash once out near Karratha, and an old bloke got hurt, we called it in, ambulance came, all good. Worth their weight in gold, and should be first in anyones list, I reckon. But ours was on a Telstra plan, and after 7 or 8 years of $35 per month, and one call, it stopped making sense ha ha
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Follow Up By: TomH - Tuesday, Aug 02, 2016 at 08:34

Tuesday, Aug 02, 2016 at 08:34
Go and buy a $2 Vodafail starter sim and chuck the sim part and use the rest. Put your sim in and a neat bit of sellotape across the back usually works. Calls are a bit over $4 a minute both out and in (you pay for the diversion TO the satfone)

Tell your friends only to ring you for emergencies.
Ours cost us $8 for calls for 2 years ownership and resold for cost price

I believe the $10 casual plan is a base rate per month and any calls are extra.?????
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Reply By: brianH - Tuesday, Aug 02, 2016 at 07:15

Tuesday, Aug 02, 2016 at 07:15
Hi Jim what my friends idea is to only use the sim from his mobile phone for a breakdown etc ( non emergency ) meaning he could then transfer it back to his mobile for normal use and use the plb beacon for an immediate emergency situation .cheers , Brian
AnswerID: 603034

Reply By: Baz - The Landy - Tuesday, Aug 02, 2016 at 14:30

Tuesday, Aug 02, 2016 at 14:30
Hi Jim

Following is a blog I wrote on my experience with Satphones, usage, and costs...

It might work for you, or it might not, but perhaps it might give another perspective to your question especially given you want to use it when travelling.

Satphones - Don't Get Hung-up On Costs

Cheers, Baz - The Landy
AnswerID: 603045

Follow Up By: Member - Jim B8 - Tuesday, Aug 02, 2016 at 14:41

Tuesday, Aug 02, 2016 at 14:41
Baz
a good blog read. I agree re the cost, but our plan got chopped when Deb was sorting out lots of plans left over from our business.
Seriously hopeful that my test using the sim from my mobile phone goes ok, that way, no plan. Of course, the cost per call will be high, but we only turn it on for emergencies, so that should be ok.
We keep in touch mostly via our truck modem, as detailed in my blog. No use when signal is zero, but we find that it gives us a good run most of the time. Just did a quick run cairns to Karratha, good signal most of the way. Not much use in the desert though ha ha
Jim
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Reply By: Member - John - Tuesday, Aug 02, 2016 at 16:58

Tuesday, Aug 02, 2016 at 16:58
G'day all, just spent two hours on the phone with Telstra, I have a new SIM card coming on the $10 Mobile Accelerator Casual Plan. For those that want one, you need to track down the "SAVES Department" at Telstra, took two hours, but got their in the end.
John and Jan

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Follow Up By: Zippo - Thursday, Aug 04, 2016 at 13:02

Thursday, Aug 04, 2016 at 13:02
Yes, the SAVERS group are the only ones within Telstra who are routinely able to provision that service.

The "normal" way to access the SAVERS group is to call the generic 132200 number. When the IVR (interactive voice menu system) asks for your enquiry "keyword", say DISCONNECTION.

Have your story ready. "I just need a backup capability when I go bush for the boss who provides me with a work phone ON ANOTHER NETWORK, a cheap SIM only deal that I can stick in my old cellphone would be perfect. I've heard that there is a $10/month plan out there somewhere." is one that has been tried and tested.

And do NOT mention SATPHONE at all.
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Follow Up By: Member - John - Thursday, Aug 04, 2016 at 15:08

Thursday, Aug 04, 2016 at 15:08
Zippo, I never mentioned Satphone either, just kept insisting that I wanted the $10 plan and eventually got it.................
John and Jan

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