TerreStar Opens Up Sales of Genus Sat-Enabled Smartphone

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TerreStar’s Genus satellite phone, previously reserved for business and enterprise customers, is now available for sale to individuals, though at a hefty premium.

The Windows Mobile 6.5.3 smartphone has a standard 3G cellular radio on-board (with AT&T providing the service), but when you wander into a coverage dead-zone, you can switch over to the satellite connection to pick up the slack, keeping you online and in-touch. Sadly, this sort of convenience doesn’t come cheaply, as you’ll pay nearly $1150 when picking up the handset from one of TerreStar’s resellers on a contract, or $1400 without one – a big bump from the $800 business users are paying. Add on satellite data charges of around $5 per megabyte, and you’re going to have to be very committed to rural data coverage to tolerate that bill.

Unlike global satellite networks like Iridium, TerreStar’s coverage is North American-only. The phone features a 2.6-inch QVGA touchscreen and a 2-megapixel camera; not exactly state-of-the-art, especially with the aging OS, but if you’re in the market for something like the Genus, pretty much the only thing that matters is the satellite connection, which you’re not going to find with another smartphone.

Source: TerreStar

Via: Electronista

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About The Author
Stephen Schenck
Stephen has been writing about electronics since 2008, which only serves to frustrate him that he waited so long to combine his love of gadgets and his degree in writing. In his spare time, he collects console and arcade game hardware, is a motorcycle enthusiast, and enjoys trapping blue crabs. Stephen's first mobile device was a 624 MHz Dell Axim X30, which he's convinced is still a viable platform. Stephen longs for a market where phones are sold independently of service, and bandwidth is cheap and plentiful; he's not holding his breath. In the meantime, he devours smartphone news and tries to sort out the juicy bitsRead more about Stephen Schenck!