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 > New smartphone direct-to-Starlink satellite service

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Skibane

San Antonio, TX

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Posted: 08/26/22 12:05am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Uses customer's existing smartphone and firmware - No hardware or software updates required.

Passes signals directly between the smartphone and Starlink satellites - No terrestrial cell towers required.

Source: SpaceX Updates

Quote:

SpaceX Invites World's Carriers to Collaborate — No More Cell Phone Dead Zones

SpaceX’s Chief Engineer Elon Musk and T-Mobile’s CEO and President Mike Sievert announced today a breakthrough plan to provide truly universal cellular connectivity.

Despite powerful LTE and 5G terrestrial wireless networks, more than 20% of the United States land area and 90% of the Earth remain uncovered by wireless companies. These dead zones have serious consequences for remote communities and those who travel off the grid for work or leisure. The telecom industry has struggled to cover these areas with traditional cellular technology due to land-use restrictions (e.g. National Parks), terrain limits (e.g. mountains, deserts and other topographical realities) and the globe’s sheer vastness. In those areas, people are either left disconnected or resort to lugging around a satellite phone and paying exorbitant rates.

Leveraging Starlink, SpaceX’s constellation of satellites in low Earth orbit, and T-Mobile’s wireless network, the companies are planning to provide customers text coverage practically everywhere in the continental US, Hawaii, parts of Alaska, Puerto Rico and territorial waters, even outside the signal of T-Mobile’s network. The service will be offered starting with a beta in select areas by the end of next year after SpaceX’s planned satellite launches. Text messaging, including SMS, MMS, and participating messaging apps, will empower customers to stay connected and share experiences nearly everywhere. Afterwards, the companies plan to pursue the addition of voice and data coverage.

In addition, Elon and Mike shared their vision for expanding Coverage Above and Beyond globally, issuing an open invitation to the world’s carriers to collaborate for truly global connectivity. T-Mobile committed to offer reciprocal roaming to those providers working with them to enable this vision.

This service will have a tremendous impact on the safety, peace of mind, and individual and business opportunities around the globe. The applications range from connecting hikers in national parks, rural communities, remote sensors and devices, and people and devices in emergency situations, such as firefighters.

This satellite-to-cellular service will provide nearly complete coverage anywhere a customer can see the sky—meaning you can continue texting and eventually make a cell phone call even when you leave terrestrial coverage. We’ve designed our system so that no modifications are required to the cell phone everyone has in their pocket today, and no new firmware, software updates, or apps are needed. As a complementary technology to terrestrial networks, SpaceX can enable mobile network operators to connect more people, fulfill coverage requirements, and create new business opportunities.

If you represent a mobile network operator or regulatory agency and are interested in partnering with SpaceX to bring this new level of mobile connectivity to your region, please reach out to us at direct2cell@spacex.com.


wa8yxm

Davison Michigan (East of Flint)

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Posted: 08/26/22 03:56am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

So my Text and SMS coverage map.. JUST BLEW UP TO "Infinity and beyond" as one Mr. lightyear might say.. Anywhere ON the Earth.. (And though odds I'll never go there several places NOT on the earth)


Home was where I park it. but alas the.
2005 Damon Intruder 377 Alas declared a total loss
after a semi "nicked" it. Still have the radios
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Horsedoc

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Posted: 08/26/22 07:27am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

wonder how that cell phone signal gets TO the satellite?


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bgum

South Louisiana

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Posted: 08/26/22 08:29am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Nearly all
Eventually
Words that leave a lot to be worked out.

pianotuna

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Posted: 08/26/22 09:20am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

How the heck are they going to use 1/10 of a watt to transmit to low earth orbit??


Regards, Don
My ride is a 28 foot Class C, 256 watts solar, 556 amp-hours of Telcom jars, 3000 watt Magnum hybrid inverter, Sola Basic Autoformer, Microair Easy Start.

time2roll

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Posted: 08/26/22 09:30am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

pianotuna wrote:

How the heck are they going to use 1/10 of a watt to transmit to low earth orbit??
Same way those rockets return from orbit and land vertically.
Space-X secret sauce.

Just when we think all has been invented.... along come this [emoticon]


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agesilaus

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Posted: 08/26/22 09:39am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

bgum wrote:

Nearly all
Eventually
Words that leave a lot to be worked out.


I'll believe it when I see it and then a year later once they get it working. Hard to see based on Signal strength.

We saw our first Starlink antenna, ever, in this campground.


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johnhicks

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Posted: 08/26/22 09:52am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

https://www.rvmobileinternet.com/t-mobile-and-spacex-starlink-partnership-coverage-above-beyond-aims-to-eliminate-dead-zones/


-jbh-

Ed_Gee

Central Oregon coast

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Posted: 08/26/22 11:05am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

T-Mobile - Space-X technical explanation
The technical explanation for how this will work is here:


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Ed_Gee

Central Oregon coast

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Posted: 08/26/22 11:10am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

pianotuna wrote:

How the heck are they going to use 1/10 of a watt to transmit to low earth orbit??


Essentially, a new generation of satellites, bigger, more powerful. Read the link in my other post here.

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