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Topic # 178989 21-Aug-2015 15:36
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Can you text to an Iridium phone direct from a VF mobile and if so what does it cost?





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  Reply # 1371715 21-Aug-2015 16:24
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Pretty sure you cant. You can however send a message to an Iridium phone from iridium.com at no charge

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  Reply # 1371790 21-Aug-2015 19:27
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I am sure you can't and calling them is not cheap about $10 per min

 
 
 
 


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  Reply # 1371791 21-Aug-2015 19:29
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I have texted Iridium in test's i'll see if i can dig out the number syntax from VF




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  Reply # 1371809 21-Aug-2015 20:30
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Yes you can, my Iridium number starts with +8816 (I think some start +8817, but they might not be Iridium, I can't remember ) and I just text it like any other number. Because of the prepaid plan I'm on, all texts (incoming and outgoing) and all data is free (calls are about US$1.50 a minute from memory)



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  Reply # 1371872 21-Aug-2015 22:31
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djaggar: Yes you can, my Iridium number starts with +8816 (I think some start +8817, but they might not be Iridium, I can't remember ) and I just text it like any other number. Because of the prepaid plan I'm on, all texts (incoming and outgoing) and all data is free (calls are about US$1.50 a minute from memory)


Do you use a NZ service provider? So far no one I have spoken with has suggested anything but postpay.





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  Reply # 1371897 22-Aug-2015 01:56
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Geektastic: 
Do you use a NZ service provider? So far no one I have spoken with has suggested anything but postpay.


I'm not sure what you mean by NZ service provider ... as far as I am aware the only service provider is Iridium ... I buy my plan via satellitephonestore.com but they are just a merchant like any other I think ... they have both prepaid and postpaid plans that appear to be the same through lots of different merchants.

I forgot I actually switched to postpaid a while back (I use an Iridium Go! Hotspot these days), I buy the Iridium Go! Unlimited plan USD$125 per month ... (the Go! is supposedly compatible with the upcoming Iridium Next satellites, however I expect the unlimited data won't be so unlimited when the faster network is finally active)







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  Reply # 1371944 22-Aug-2015 10:05
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djaggar:
Geektastic: 
Do you use a NZ service provider? So far no one I have spoken with has suggested anything but postpay.


I'm not sure what you mean by NZ service provider ... as far as I am aware the only service provider is Iridium ... I buy my plan via satellitephonestore.com but they are just a merchant like any other I think ... they have both prepaid and postpaid plans that appear to be the same through lots of different merchants.

I forgot I actually switched to postpaid a while back (I use an Iridium Go! Hotspot these days), I buy the Iridium Go! Unlimited plan USD$125 per month ... (the Go! is supposedly compatible with the upcoming Iridium Next satellites, however I expect the unlimited data won't be so unlimited when the faster network is finally active)






Yes I meant reseller I suppose rather than NZ service provider.

How do you find the Go unit? It's a cheaper alternative to buy than an actual handset and since I only want something to carry in my vehicle for emergency use where there is no cell coverage (which happens a lot in my work life) or when travelling overseas to places like Laos and Cambodia etc I wondered if that might be a viable solution.

Of course it relies on your cellphone being robust/available/charged but then again it is $600 cheaper than a specific handset.





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  Reply # 1371968 22-Aug-2015 11:16
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Geektastic: How do you find the Go unit? It's a cheaper alternative to buy than an actual handset and since I only want something to carry in my vehicle for emergency use where there is no cell coverage (which happens a lot in my work life) or when travelling overseas to places like Laos and Cambodia etc I wondered if that might be a viable solution.

Of course it relies on your cellphone being robust/available/charged but then again it is $600 cheaper than a specific handset.


It has one huge advantage over a dedicated sat phone that I don't think they sell very well, because it creates a wifi hotspot it decouples the handset from the signal. It can be outside getting great line of sight with the satellite, while you are standing inside eating cheese and sipping wine ... it's one supermarket bag away from weather proof. It's sandfly proof, I'm not. It's outside getting it's head blown off, I'm sitting inside talking normally. Often you can sit it on a window sill inside while you sit on the couch ...

The data is soooo slow (2k4 baud) that it takes 10 minutes to download a decent weather map, but what's 10 minutes when you have a glass of wine and a wee bit of cheese. I love that you pop the antenna and it automatically sends its GPS location to a friend, and I really love the SOS button for when things get serious (for example running low on wine). Seriously the full on Medivac options are very affordable ...

Call quality is the same as the sat phone, but I tend to text and email anyway ... it also uses your phones contacts etc so you don't have sync issues with the number you want nt being in your sat phone ...

As for keeping batteries charged ... well that's just life if you want to be disconnected from life and connected to the net at the same time ... if it is in your vehicle then you have power anyway, you can have it wired to an external antenna and power and then you are effectively always on.





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  Reply # 1371979 22-Aug-2015 12:02
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Those are all good points.

Will it work with any cell phone or is there some app required?

I'm envisioning a scenario where we have a vehicle accident and my phone is lost or destroyed but a client travelling with us has one. Albeit a remote possibility but I am very much the Boy Scout when it comes to this sort of thing - Be Prepared!





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  Reply # 1372001 22-Aug-2015 13:38
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Geektastic: Those are all good points.

Will it work with any cell phone or is there some app required?

I'm envisioning a scenario where we have a vehicle accident and my phone is lost or destroyed but a client travelling with us has one. Albeit a remote possibility but I am very much the Boy Scout when it comes to this sort of thing - Be Prepared!


Two apps, one for calls and texts, the other for web and email ...

If you have an accident you press the big red button and the Lone Ranger arrives in a chopper (that bit is free) ... so its effectively a PLB too. If you pay more all hell breaks loose to get you safe depending on how much you pay for Medivac and Search and Rescue ...

If you have an accident where the only thing injured is your cell phone you raise the antenna and it texts your friend and tells them your GPS corordinates ... then you wait for Tonto to arrive on horseback ...

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  Reply # 1372067 22-Aug-2015 17:54
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Geektastic:
djaggar: Yes you can, my Iridium number starts with +8816 (I think some start +8817, but they might not be Iridium, I can't remember ) and I just text it like any other number. Because of the prepaid plan I'm on, all texts (incoming and outgoing) and all data is free (calls are about US$1.50 a minute from memory)


Do you use a NZ service provider? So far no one I have spoken with has suggested anything but postpay.


Personally at work and on the boat many people say there is only 1 Iridium provider worth looking at, GMN http://www.globalmarinenet.com/ - Great service and they know their game. The NZ/AU pack's are pretty good for prepaid




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All comment's I make are my own personal opinion and do not in any way, shape or form reflect the views of current or former employers unless specifically stated 



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  Reply # 1372204 22-Aug-2015 22:46
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djaggar:
Geektastic: Those are all good points.

Will it work with any cell phone or is there some app required?

I'm envisioning a scenario where we have a vehicle accident and my phone is lost or destroyed but a client travelling with us has one. Albeit a remote possibility but I am very much the Boy Scout when it comes to this sort of thing - Be Prepared!


Two apps, one for calls and texts, the other for web and email ...

If you have an accident you press the big red button and the Lone Ranger arrives in a chopper (that bit is free) ... so its effectively a PLB too. If you pay more all hell breaks loose to get you safe depending on how much you pay for Medivac and Search and Rescue ...

If you have an accident where the only thing injured is your cell phone you raise the antenna and it texts your friend and tells them your GPS corordinates ... then you wait for Tonto to arrive on horseback ...


I carry a proper PLB for true emergency use when the cavalry are required.

I'm really looking for something to communicate when a non-emergency SNAFU needs assistance and as 'just in case'.

It's a shame that there is no 'unlimited validity' sim with say 60 mins on it purely as an emergency item.









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  Reply # 1372206 22-Aug-2015 22:49
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Beccara:
Geektastic:
djaggar: Yes you can, my Iridium number starts with +8816 (I think some start +8817, but they might not be Iridium, I can't remember ) and I just text it like any other number. Because of the prepaid plan I'm on, all texts (incoming and outgoing) and all data is free (calls are about US$1.50 a minute from memory)


Do you use a NZ service provider? So far no one I have spoken with has suggested anything but postpay.


Personally at work and on the boat many people say there is only 1 Iridium provider worth looking at, GMN http://www.globalmarinenet.com/ - Great service and they know their game. The NZ/AU pack's are pretty good for prepaid


The handsets are a bit more expensive - the Iridium Extreme here is around NZ$2020 + GST. Same price in the US but then you have shipping and Customs 'handling' charges etc as well.

It's scary that a high volume plan in NZ for an iPhone is not as cheap as you might expect it to be when compared to these things that work literally anywhere.





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  Reply # 1372824 24-Aug-2015 08:44
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Keep a sharp eye out as you'll find the extremes up on ebay and TM often, Offshore seem to have a fetish for ditching them after a year so a few euro sellers get bulk discount, New in box for $1200 USD.

The Service provider might aswell be your network operator as they handled everything so getting a good SP that isn't prone to billing mistakes (See Rebel Heart evac) and is responsive enough you dont need a replacement SIM in the middle of nowhere as your billing expired before they responded to you. GMN also dont seem to give a toss if you buy your kit from them and airtime or just airtime, A few SP's i talked to wont do SIM only options




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All comment's I make are my own personal opinion and do not in any way, shape or form reflect the views of current or former employers unless specifically stated 

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