Satellite Network Providers: Just Who Are They?

3 Jun 2008

Satellite technology can be used for a variety of things from cellular phones to television, radio and even GPS systems.  In fact, it seems to be a more reliable type of communication network because with the right satellite network you can get coverage from the far reaches of the planet.  With so much satellite technology out there today, it can be quite difficult to determine who exactly the providers are.  Hopefully by taking the time to read this, you will have a better understanding of who the satellite providers really are.

Globalstar:  Founded in 1995, Globalstar provides both voice and data through high quality satellite services across the globe.  They offer excellent coverage where cell phones fail to deliver.  They use the technology of Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellites and either hand held devices or a vehicle mounted device.  This allows the user the best possible access to communication with fewer dropped calls or lack of signal.  LiveViewGPS distributed devices on the GlobalStar Network include the SX1 Satellite Tracker and SPOT Satellite Messenger.

Orbcomm: One of the older satellite network companies, Orbcomm was founded in the 1980s.  Today, they provide low cost data communication using a network of 30 LEO satellites.  This system however is limited to data communication services.  They are much like the Globalstar system in that because they use the LEO satellite systems they are able to receive and transmit data communications from all around the world.  They have the ability to monitor, track and send messages as well as provide weather data.

Iridium: Founded in 2004 and based out of Bethesda, Maryland, Iridium Satellite is the only true provider of global satellite communications.  They provide both voice and data communication no matter where you are located in the world.  This is because Iridium employs the use of 66 LEO satellites.  Each satellite acts through a cross linked system allowing a completely meshed network to be formed.  This means that Iridium is able to deliver the best, most reliable real time communication service from anywhere in the world in the most secure manner possible.  In fact, they are so extremely reliable that the U.S. Department of Defense is one of their subscribers.  For Satellite Based Fleet Management, the MLT400 uses the Iridium Network.

Inmarsat: Founded in 1979, Inmarsat has been around for just about 30 years.  They were established as an intergovernmental organization to provide satellite communications for the United Nations. They are based out of London.   As a pioneering satellite network provider, Inmarsat has the capability to provide satellite service for television, radio, mobile phone… you name it, Inmarsat is able to do it.  They are the leading provider of mobile satellite commuincations world wide.  They do this by operating 10 geostatationary satellites.  With this type of technology, you are pretty much garanteed that you will have a signal no matter how far off the beaten path you wander.

After reading this, you should now have an understanding about what each satellite communication company has to offer.  This should make it easier to purchase your next satellite GPS tracking device.

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