Bullitt has in one press release announced that the group will launch a smartphone that can communicate via satellite in the first quarter of 2023. Unlike the Apple iPhone 14 (approx. 960 euros on Amazon) not only can emergency calls be made and one’s own location shared, the device should also allow text messages to be sent to friends without a mobile network.
According to Bullitt, it takes about ten seconds to connect to the network and send a message. As with Apple, this service is subject to a charge, with buyers of this smartphone being able to communicate via the satellite network for twelve months free of charge. While the technology used to send and receive messages is partially proprietary, this MediaTek 3GPP NTN (Non-Terrestrial Network) chip should allow smartphones from other manufacturers to connect to a satellite network in the future.
In future, important messages and emergency calls can also be sent outside of a mobile network, a potentially life-saving feature. It is not yet clear which companies will use MediaTek’s new satellite chip alongside Bullitt. After the Apple iPhone 14 with Globalstar connection and the Huawei Mate50 Pro with support for sending messages via the Beidou satellites, the next smartphone with a satellite connection is likely to be the Samsung Galaxy S23, because the device should be able to use the Iridium network to send and receive messages.
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