satellite phone service

Time for a Satphone – KVH Shipping TracPhone V3 Mini-VSAT

New KVH TracPhone V3 Mini-VSAT - Click for Larger Image

New KVH TracPhone V3 Mini-VSAT

One of the more significant news items from the recent Miami Show was the announcement from KVH of its new mini-VSAT package, the TracPhone V3, which is the smallest Ku-band maritime VSAT antenna in the world at just 14.5″ (37 cm) in diameter.  The company said today that it has shipped the first fully FCC-licensed units to customers.

Maybe even more important to cruisers and passagemakers are the airtime costs with this system — including simple, straightforward metered service at just $0.49 per minute for voice calls worldwide and $0.99 per megabyte at the fastest speeds available on the network.  That’s pretty much unheard of in the satcom biz and it means that this kind of communications capability is going to be available to a huge new potential customer base for KVH.

Are airtime costs the main reason you haven’t considered a sat phone option on your boat?  Do these kind of rates change that for you?  Tell us in the comments.

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Posted by Tom in Cruising Under Power, Cruising Under Sail, Electronics, Technology