Satellite Phones Or Cellular Phones. Which Should You Buy?
Today, there is a huge selection of cell phones and cell phone providers to choose from. For most people the normal cell phone is adequate for their needs. However, if you travel a lot, particularly overseas or offshore, you will quickly find that the cell phone you bought doesn't work because there aren't any towers nearby, as in the case of traveling offshore. If you travel overseas, your cell phone won't work there either as they have their own dedicated networks.
If you are a business person and you find that you travel all over the globe, or if you find yourself offshore frequently because of work or leisure, the ownership of a satellite phone is essential for communications with your friends and family back home.
Today's satellite phones are economical to purchase, though the calling plans will be much more expensive compared to traditional cell phone plans, but they will work just about everywhere. With a network of approximately 70 satellites encircling the globe and growing, they provide coverage to most of the planet except the most remote areas. Having a satellite phone will give you peace of mind that you can reach family or work associates at the push of a button.
Older satellite phones were bulky. Today's satellite phones are much more compact, priced affordably, and best of all, the reception is crystal clear.
Eventually, the industry will be composed entirely of satellite phones and providers as the traditional cell phone becomes outdated. Just like VCR's are being replaced with DVD players, and the eight track tape before that. Industry leaders are lobbying hard to push their agenda by convincing political leaders and investors to consider satellite phones as the next generation in mobile phone technology for the average consumer. Eventually, every corner of the globe, even the most remote regions of the planet, will have access to this technology as more satellites are put into service.
This technology is much more reliable than traditional cell phones. Signals never get dropped as you constantly are within reach of the satellite's coverage. Eventually, I envision satellite phones and PC's to start integrating their technologies even more than they currently have, just like cell phones have done. Imagine having a satellite phone that has crystal clear reception and reliability, along with the capability to access the Internet anywhere on the planet. Currently, satellite phones require the use of a laptop to access the Internet.
Some of the leading players in this industry are Iridium, Inmarset, and Globalstar. They require an annual service fee that ranges anywhere from several hundred dollars to thousands of dollars, depending on how many minutes you get in your plan. Extras, like voice mail, data transfer, and fax capabilities cost extra. So does roaming. Your plans have a fixed rate as long as you are within your plan's coverage area. For example, if your coverage area includes North America and you travel to Europe, roaming charges will apply, but at least you will have access.
The calling plans of most satellite phones usually will cost anywhere from $.09 per minute to .50 per minute on average. The more minutes that you sign up for will determine your rate. The more minutes you have, the lower the per minute rate will be.
These costs are usually out of the range of most consumers, though eventually these costs will decrease as the technology becomes more widely used, as with any new technology. However, for the person that usually would require this kind of service, the costs should be tax deductible which will help tremendously.
Another option to consider is renting. Most dealers usually have a plan that costs around to per day. This is considerably cheaper and an excellent alternative if you only need satellite coverage for a week or so while you're on that overseas vacation.
Serious thought and consideration should go into the purchase of a cell phone or a satellite phone, but if you find yourself in the middle of nowhere, the knowledge that you are connected to the rest of the world with your satellite phone is immeasurable.
About the Author: David Dorrough is a retired educator, having taught at several leading universities. Today, he is active as a free lance writer and internet marketer. For more resources on cell phones and satellite phones, you should visit his website at http://www.cell-phones.consumers-choice.net