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Satellite phones

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Old 04-12-2018, 10:36 AM
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What is the best satellite phone and who currently has the best deal?
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Old 04-13-2018, 07:51 AM
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I personally think the new Globalstar GSP1700 is the best deal. The phone is the most inexpensive (under $500), and they seem to be the most flexible with rate plans and allowing you to shut off service for months you dont use it. Plus, with Globalstar you will get a phone number with a US area code, so it is cheaper for people to call you. Also, since Globalstar has the lowest orbit satelllites, there is no delay in the speech like you will find with Iridium and Inmarsat. Irisium still has the best worldwide coverage with very little blank spots, but you will pay twice as much for phone and service.
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Old 04-13-2018, 08:06 AM
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Originally Posted by mig888 View Post
What is the best satellite phone and who currently has the best deal?
I'm looking at sat phones now. It would be great if they had built in GPS in case of an emergency.
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Old 04-13-2018, 08:07 AM
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For an emergency, go with an EPIRB. No one has time to talk when there is an emergency on board. An EPIRB will bring help automatically.
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Old 04-13-2018, 09:48 PM
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Originally Posted by sarasotasales View Post
I personally think the new Globalstar GSP1700 is the best deal. The phone is the most inexpensive (under $500), and they seem to be the most flexible with rate plans and allowing you to shut off service for months you dont use it. Plus, with Globalstar you will get a phone number with a US area code, so it is cheaper for people to call you. Also, since Globalstar has the lowest orbit satelllites, there is no delay in the speech like you will find with Iridium and Inmarsat. Irisium still has the best worldwide coverage with very little blank spots, but you will pay twice as much for phone and service.
Why buy it, if it doesn't work like you want it to.
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Old 04-14-2018, 12:47 AM
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Originally Posted by sarasotasales View Post
For an emergency, go with an EPIRB. No one has time to talk when there is an emergency on board. An EPIRB will bring help automatically.
i actually have three EPIRBS — one mounted in my console, one in my ditch bag and a personal locater beacon I keep in my pocket. I need the satellite phone for when I am out at sea for a couple of days (at the Dry Tortugas) simply to be able to call home and for my family to be able to reach me in case of emergency. I am also looking at 5he Garmin In Reach to communicate by text.
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Old 04-14-2018, 03:28 AM
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Iridium - Products and Services

Iridium sat phones are probably the best out there. I take mine everywhere I go. On my boat I keep it in a waterproof Plano carrier in my ditch bag. There is something about common sense that will tell you that it is better to reach out and call for help than just waiting through the process of being found. These have pretty much have world coverage.
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Old 04-14-2018, 01:00 PM
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My Iridium that I had for 13 years finally died so I looked at other options. I went with the Inmarsat2 phone for my new one. I have had it for a month and have tried it in Andros and Walkers area in bahamas and worked great. I'm going to try it again tuna fishing next week but so far I can recommend it as it does what it is supposed to do. Will also get to try in Panama in two weeks so I'll report back on how it works there.
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Old 04-14-2018, 03:40 PM
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Originally Posted by mig888 View Post


i actually have three EPIRBS — one mounted in my console, one in my ditch bag and a personal locater beacon I keep in my pocket. I need the satellite phone for when I am out at sea for a couple of days (at the Dry Tortugas) simply to be able to call home and for my family to be able to reach me in case of emergency. I am also looking at 5he Garmin In Reach to communicate by text.
I got an Inreach so wife can track while out of cell coverage, and texts.

I plan on going to the Dry Tortugas this year, when that happens, i’ll probably rent a Sat Phone.

planning to buy a PLB
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Old 04-15-2018, 06:44 PM
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I have the Globalstar and we couldn’t be happier. Flexible plans. We typically use it to check in while out at sea. But to receive calls, the phone has to see the sky (we typically keep it in the console, out of the elements). Don’t know if the others have this option, but I just installed a car kit with a marine antenna. Now the phone is always charging while it sits on the cradle in the electronics box and can receive calls at any time. Nice addition.
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Old 04-16-2018, 01:13 PM
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First follow the advice here and get an EPIRB

i have an Iridium Go on my boat. Only made two calls in two years but we use it to text a lot. It’s a sat wifi box so it connects to your smart phone when you step on the boat. It’s in a drawer in the cabin, plugged into a 12v receptacle and an antenna on the roof. You do everything through your cell phone. Everyone on the boat can connect their phone and text but incoming messages go to all connected phones.

I like it a lot for $50 a month, no activation fee and three month minimum contract. Just like texting from land, but no pics or vids.
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Old 04-16-2018, 02:22 PM
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The globalstar phones have been great. I probably activate 5 a week. No problems from users to speak of, and the absolute best rates.
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Old 04-16-2018, 03:46 PM
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Is an EPIRB essential?
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Old 04-17-2018, 04:53 AM
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Originally Posted by elsnow View Post
Is an EPIRB essential?
It is in my boat and many of the boats docked around me. For that one time you have to go into the drink and you didn’t have time to make a call because everything happened so fast...... your EPIRB will be essential. Just another tool in your kit to help save you and your passengers when things go sideways
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Old 04-17-2018, 05:15 AM
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Originally Posted by sarasotasales View Post
For an emergency, go with an EPIRB. No one has time to talk when there is an emergency on board. An EPIRB will bring help automatically.
I have an EPIRB, this is a back up/Convenience to keep in touch with family
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Old 04-17-2018, 05:17 AM
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Originally Posted by Loosey Lucy View Post
First follow the advice here and get an EPIRB

i have an Iridium Go on my boat. Only made two calls in two years but we use it to text a lot. It’s a sat wifi box so it connects to your smart phone when you step on the boat. It’s in a drawer in the cabin, plugged into a 12v receptacle and an antenna on the roof. You do everything through your cell phone. Everyone on the boat can connect their phone and text but incoming messages go to all connected phones.

I like it a lot for $50 a month, no activation fee and three month minimum contract. Just like texting from land, but no pics or vids.
good to know, thx!
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Old 04-17-2018, 08:26 AM
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Originally Posted by yachtjim View Post
The globalstar phones have been great. I probably activate 5 a week. No problems from users to speak of, and the absolute best rates.

The rates are based on a yearly contract... is that correct?
If that is the case. Why wouldnt you go with the Annual 780/yr over the monthly $64.99



Additional Information:
• 12 month term applies to all rate plans
• All annual service plans of $480.00 / year or less will be charged a Network Maintenance Fee of up to $120.00 / year upon renewal. All annual service plans of more than $480.00 / year will be charged a Network Maintenance Fee of up to $150.00 / year upon renewal. All monthly service plans of $40.00 / month or less will be charged a Network Maintenance Fee of up to $9.99 /month after 6 months of activation. All monthly service plans of more than $40.00 / month will be charged a Network Maintenance Fee of up to $12.50 / month after 6 months of activation.
• A $99 security deposit may be required depending on the credit score provided by the Experian credit bureau if not enough identifying information is provided (e.g. date of birth, driver’s license number, social security number and street address) for the required credit check
• Early termination of the service agreement will require customer to pay an Early Termination Fee in the amount of 100% of the outstanding balance of the contract, plus the full amount of any credits issued during the Term (including promotions)
• $50.00 activation fee per line will be collected by the sales representative
• All plans include inbound SMS
• All voice calls will be billed for the first minute then in 30 second increments • Subscriptions on the same annual plan and the same account will have the minutes pooled • Unused airtime will not be rolled over to the next billing cycle
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