Is the Iridium the best sat phone to have and which model? "9555" or the "9505A"

Submitted: Monday, Jun 08, 2009 at 15:10
ThreadID: 69612 Views:3381 Replies:6 FollowUps:6
This Thread has been Archived
Hi all
I know this has probably been done over before big time but i dont seem to have great sucess with past post searches.
Is the Iridium the sat phone to go for?
Is there any others worth considering?
Is the "955" the better option over the "9505A" ?
Whats the right price for these units?

Also what is the best plan for minimal use?

Kind regards
Back Expand Un-Read 0 Moderator

Reply By: Member - Dunworkin (WA) - Monday, Jun 08, 2009 at 16:08

Monday, Jun 08, 2009 at 16:08
Hi GN, back in October we did quite a bit of research into all phones satellite and finished up with the Iridium 9505A.

If you would like to get more info on our research you could either MM me or send me an email.



Simba, our much missed baby.

Lifetime Member
My Profile  Send Message

AnswerID: 368957

Reply By: Member - Graham H (QLD) - Monday, Jun 08, 2009 at 16:36

Monday, Jun 08, 2009 at 16:36
You are correct it is a weekly question Search Iridium or satfone and read for a week.

Buy a s/hand9505A or even a 9505 and get a Telstra sim that is on a plan and is internationally roamed Stick it in and $3 a minute in or out. No fees other than that. SMS 75c

Do the search all answers are there in detail
AnswerID: 368961

Follow Up By: Member - G N (VIC) - Monday, Jun 08, 2009 at 20:34

Monday, Jun 08, 2009 at 20:34
HI Graham H
So whats the lowest plan that you can have per month and keep the $3/min?
FollowupID: 636503

Follow Up By: Gone Bush (WA) - Monday, Jun 08, 2009 at 20:48

Monday, Jun 08, 2009 at 20:48
If you use your Next G SIM card from your regular Telstra handset you are not on a plan, and don't need to be.

The calls to and from your Satphone just appear on your normal mobile phone bill.

I saw on another Forum that, apparently, Telstra is overstocked with 9505As and, if you really push hard, you can get them for as low as $1000 (half price).

You should buy one outright if you want to use your Next G SIM. Telstra will tell you that you can't do this but that is completely wrong.

Many EO members, including me, have bought their phone outright, no plan, and use their Next G SIM.


I'm glad I ain't too scared to be lazy
- Augustus McCrae (Lonesome Dove)

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  Send Message

FollowupID: 636506

Follow Up By: Members Paul and Melissa (VIC) - Monday, Jun 08, 2009 at 20:55

Monday, Jun 08, 2009 at 20:55
I have a 9500 and just use my wifes SIM card (GSM) which is a $20 plan and using it in the satphone it cost $3.85 per minute which for the minimal use it gets used for is OK as you dont need to pay for another plan that only gets used rarely so in the long runyou come out in front i think
FollowupID: 636508

Follow Up By: Member - Graham H (QLD) - Monday, Jun 08, 2009 at 21:36

Monday, Jun 08, 2009 at 21:36
Do as gone bush says Try to buy one outright but DONT GET TALKED INTO A PLAN.

Just use your ordinary sim as long as it has been internationally roamed.

You then only pay for calls you make with no monthly charges.

Be aware that you also pay for inward calls as the caller pays to ring your mobile number and YOU pay for the diversion to your satfone.
If used for emergencys only or for SMS its cheap insurance.

FollowupID: 636522

Reply By: DLipton - Tuesday, Jun 09, 2009 at 21:27

Tuesday, Jun 09, 2009 at 21:27
If you are looking purely for a voice solution then the Iridium hardware is the best offering, and the 9555 is a better buy then the 9505A. The changes are marginal but significant and the voice quality and signal maintenance of the 9555 is certainly noticeable. If you need any further info have a look at our website

Hope the feedback helps


AnswerID: 369216

Follow Up By: Member - Mike DID - Wednesday, Jun 10, 2009 at 11:04

Wednesday, Jun 10, 2009 at 11:04
It was interesting to see the independant comparison report by Frost & Sullivan comparing Iridium and Globalstar networks on your downloads page.

Those who post "Globalstar works perfectly" messages have a lot of explaining to do !
FollowupID: 636736

Reply By: Member - Motley - Wednesday, Jun 10, 2009 at 13:42

Wednesday, Jun 10, 2009 at 13:42
9505a's available at discount at the moment. New phone on the way
AnswerID: 369310

Reply By: satman - Wednesday, Jun 10, 2009 at 22:42

Wednesday, Jun 10, 2009 at 22:42

In response to your query. The real answer is it totally depends what you need and how your going to be using it. I will try to give you a quick Satellite Phone 101. Please however this comes to all those who read it, comes with a caveat. That is that all your circumstances are differnt and the most important thing you can do is get good quality advise to get the right product and service to meet your individual needs as it will save you a fortune.

If you are just using it for Australia and want it for emergency only, then I would buy a Thuraya S02510 .They are about a $1000 new and a car charger at $45 completes what you need. They are available with airtime contracts and pre paid. So if your are caravanning or 4WD for 3 months or 6 months or a year and only wanted it very occassionally I would buy this model with a pre paid 39 card. (this has no time limit on the card and will last about 40 minutes and can be increased with a phone call to our office whilst your travelling.

If you require it for more than the very occasional ( hey never said my spelling was great) chat then I would buy the same unit with a one year contract. Benefits are cheaper call rates for more talk time.

If I wanted a world wide Phone with outstanding durability and an awesome record of reliability I would buy an Iridium 9505A (not to be confused with the the 9505. (there are reasons that the previous model was upgraded) but as there is someone selling one in this forum I have no wish to upset them.

The reason I can testify how good the 9505A is against any other model is that I dealt with a run a fllet of over 100 of them and have them out all over Australia and the world and have done for over 5 years.

Which should not be forgotten, that depending how long you are going for, that rental may be a low cost option. If that is the case check out

It is true that the 9505a has been superseded by the vastly costlier 9555. However unlike other comments within the forum discount is not the word. The reality is that I bought the last 32 ever made 9505A in the world. Simply because they are still $440 cheaper than the 9555 new and the 9555 has some dust issues in the mother board due to rubber seals not being as airtight as the 9505A.

There is also the option of a pre owned 9505A which can be purchased at just under $1500. Again a great a option dependant on use and time required.

If I were using the phone heaps and a company was paying I would go for the 9555 because its slightly smaller and a new toy. But if that's not your bag one of the other options are very sensible.

I hope this is of help to anyone who are looking for good communications thought Australia.
AnswerID: 369435

Follow Up By: Member - Mike DID - Wednesday, Jun 10, 2009 at 23:39

Wednesday, Jun 10, 2009 at 23:39
However the one Thuraya Satellite is very low in the sky in South Eastern Australia.

If you're in a valley or behind a hill and you can't get satellite access when you turn the phone on, you will NEVER get satellite access.
FollowupID: 636862

Reply By: satman - Wednesday, Jun 10, 2009 at 23:51

Wednesday, Jun 10, 2009 at 23:51
Hi Mike

Yes you are correct in that they have a lower satellite base and that depending where and the direction of the hill is will depend on its signal strength.

It sounds like you have had a bad experience which is why we suggest finding out what the idividual requirements are.

As a point to note though, is that if you face the aerial to the north west its more likely to connect straight away. The other issues we have seen is that because the aerial is so small that if you turn your head you can also lose signal.

However with this knowledge, if your just using it for emergencies it can still make a good value alternative to nothing.

satman :)
AnswerID: 369444

Sponsored Links

Popular Products (13)