updated 04:20 pm EDT, Fri April 4, 2008
MSV sat phones
Mobile Satellite Ventures is aiming to expand its services to the general public with mobile phones that can use both a traditional network or switch to a satellite in remote areas. MSV promises to bring this hybrid connection technology in the first phone pictured initially, which would become a part of MSV's L-series line. The non-working model shown included Wi-Fi, applications typically found in smartphones, a web-cam and a speakerphone, all in a manageable 0.6-inch thick body. The interface is via the phone's 480x320-pixel resolution touch-screen. Another prototype, called simply the R-series, would act as a tougher, less delicate offering in MSV's line-up.
To that effect, the company showed off a slider phone prototype at CTIA, promising to make it available to the general public in 2010. First, though, MSV would need to partner up with a traditional US-based provider that would offer terrestrial coverage. Its next generation network planned for next year would see the launch of two new satellites, one for the US, the other for Canada.
The company already outfits the Coast Guard, military and with mobile satellite communications services and devices. [via Gearlog]