While most telecom operators around the world are rushing to expand 5G and 4G coverage, there are still areas that are unserved due to extremely sparse populations. It looks like Samsung might soon introduce a satellite communication feature for its upcoming Galaxy S23 series, which can be a lifesaver in case of emergency.
According to ETNews in Korea, Samsung is following Huawei and Apple in enabling satellite communications for its next-generation Galaxy models. The Korean smartphone maker is said to have been working on the feature for two years and is said to be operating Iridium’s network of 66 Low Earth Orbit (LEO) communications satellites.
The report says Samsung is preparing a satellite feature that will allow users to transmit text messages and low-resolution images at hundreds of kbps. The biggest challenge in satellite communications is antenna reception, as it usually requires a larger antenna to support voice and data services. As a result, Samsung needs to find a way to design an antenna small enough to fit into smartphones.
Among the major smartphone manufacturers, Huawei is the first to offer satellite communications on the Huawei Mate 50 Pro to send messages when the user is outside a mobile coverage area. It uses China’s BeiDou satellites which have a wide footprint in the Asia-Pacific region, but the satellite communication service is currently only limited to China.
Apple also introduced its Emergency SOS satellite communication feature for the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Pro. It’s free for the first two years, but it’s only available to users in the US and Canada.
Like all forms of communication, the availability of satellite services is subject to local regulations. SpaceX’s StarLink service is expected to cover Malaysia sometime in 2023 and they have started accepting $99 reservations from Malaysian residents. However, it should be noted that StarLink would require a Network Installation or Service Provider License (NFP/NSP) from the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission before it could provide commercial services to Malaysian users.
[ SOURCE 2 ]