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PostPosted: April 8th, 2017, 12:46 pm 
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Location: Canmore AB
I haven't been paying attention to this site for a couple of years so I'm out of the loop. Has Globalstar resolved it's satellite issues? I know the market switched to Iridium due to the lack of reliability of GS.
We're doing the Bloodvein Knox Lake to Lk WPG this summer and are looking to rent a Sat phone. Any other players out there to look at?
Hugh

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PostPosted: April 8th, 2017, 1:17 pm 
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Location: Toronto, Ontario Canada
From my research (which is a bit dated) they (Iridium, Globalstar & Inmarsat) all work pretty well except in the far north (north of 65?). I had an Inmarsat Isatphone on the Bloodvein which worked fine as it has anytime I used it below 59 degrees (the most Northerly I've hae been).

For the far north the phone of choice seems to be Iridium but I'm not 100% sure if this is actual better performance (it was at one time) or just going with the flow.

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PostPosted: April 8th, 2017, 6:29 pm 
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I have had a Globalstar phone for 12 years. Great at first and then their problems. I stuck with them because they offered unlimited for $25 a month to keep customers. They have improved but have never gotten back to what they were.

The new kid on the block is the Garmin Inreach Explorer that has two way texting and uses the Iridium satellites.

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PostPosted: April 8th, 2017, 6:52 pm 
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Location: Canmore AB
We have an Inreach. However texting, we have found, has limitations mostly time lag as well as understanding nuances of messages. We used ours with an iPhone so typing was easy. The 911 part and messaging are outstanding. I love being able to disable the service for a fee.

When you need a Sat phone, you need a Sat phone.
We needed an early pickup on the Hayes two years ago and I could have made arrangements in two phone calls. With timing of the Flying service returning calls to our guy on the outside and his returning calls and texts to us, it took a day of sitting on our butts waiting for confirmation. then 1 1/2 days of waiting.

We now travel with both. Belt and suspenders I suppose.
Far cry from the days of saying "see you in three weeks"..... :doh:

Hugh

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"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover."
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PostPosted: April 8th, 2017, 7:29 pm 
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Joined: March 25th, 2017, 11:33 am
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Location: Kugluktuk
North of 60N, Iridium is preferable. North of 65N Iridium is essential.


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PostPosted: April 9th, 2017, 7:35 am 
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Hugh wrote:

When you need a Sat phone, you need a Sat phone.
We needed an early pickup on the Hayes two years ago and I could have made arrangements in two phone calls. With timing of the Flying service returning calls to our guy on the outside and his returning calls and texts to us, it took a day of sitting on our butts waiting for confirmation. then 1 1/2 days of waiting.



Hugh


Very interesting observation from the field. Makes me think I should keep paying the $500 a year for the Satellite phone since I already own it.

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PostPosted: April 10th, 2017, 2:00 am 
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Joined: October 27th, 2003, 1:41 pm
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Location: Fairbanks AK
I pay $54/month for my Iridium phone but that's less than I pay for air charters. It's also nice to have for emergencies on isolated Alaskan roads. It's awfully easy to hit a moose.

Douglas


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PostPosted: April 10th, 2017, 5:07 am 
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A little off subject here but curious about how some of you keep your sat phones recharged. Solar kits?

GG

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PostPosted: April 10th, 2017, 7:13 am 
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Gerald Guay wrote:
A little off subject here but curious about how some of you keep your sat phones recharged. Solar kits?

GG


I only turn my Globalstar phone on to make a call or let messages download. That becomes an issue when you have to wait 10 minutes or longer to pick up a good satellite connection. Even with that I can do that almost every day and still have battery left after a month long trip. I carry an extra battery as insurance but one battery gets me through a month.

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PostPosted: April 10th, 2017, 8:53 am 
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Location: Kugluktuk
Turned off, my old (10+ years) Iridium 'phone holds a charge for a year. I don't leave it turned on, waiting for calls. I only use it to MAKE a call.


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PostPosted: April 12th, 2017, 9:23 am 
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Location: Canmore AB
I've usually done the 6 month Canada Alaska SIM card for approx $325 $CA
Marten I only use it when needed so batteries aren't an issue. if family needs it for their piece of mind, I have setup two calling times /day when the phone is on. No problems with battery life. Of course then one has to keep track of time. :doh:
Marten wrote:
Hugh wrote:

When you need a Sat phone, you need a Sat phone.
We needed an early pickup on the Hayes two years ago and I could have made arrangements in two phone calls. With timing of the Flying service returning calls to our guy on the outside and his returning calls and texts to us, it took a day of sitting on our butts waiting for confirmation. then 1 1/2 days of waiting.



Hugh


Very interesting observation from the field. Makes me think I should keep paying the $500 a year for the Satellite phone since I already own it.

_________________
"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover."
M.T.


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PostPosted: April 12th, 2017, 9:23 am 
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Joined: June 22nd, 2004, 4:45 pm
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Location: Canmore AB
I've usually done the 6 month Canada Alaska SIM card for approx $325 $CA
Marten I only use it when needed so batteries aren't an issue. if family needs it for their piece of mind, I have setup two calling times /day when the phone is on. No problems with battery life. Of course then one has to keep track of time. :doh:
Marten wrote:
Hugh wrote:

When you need a Sat phone, you need a Sat phone.
We needed an early pickup on the Hayes two years ago and I could have made arrangements in two phone calls. With timing of the Flying service returning calls to our guy on the outside and his returning calls and texts to us, it took a day of sitting on our butts waiting for confirmation. then 1 1/2 days of waiting.



Hugh


Very interesting observation from the field. Makes me think I should keep paying the $500 a year for the Satellite phone since I already own it.

_________________
"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover."
M.T.


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PostPosted: April 12th, 2017, 9:50 am 
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Joined: August 27th, 2002, 7:00 pm
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Location: Geraldton, Ontario Can
Locally, I understand that Globalstar has come a long way since the days of the "Globalstar Dance", where one would dance around trying to find a spot where the phone would connect. Hydro one has new phones that are Globalstar based, my buddy says they work great.

I'm still an Iridium user, with both my phone and my Delormer texter.


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