The first “cell phone towers” in space are in orbit

The first “cell phone towers” in space are in orbit

SpaceX has launched the first Starlink satellites that will allow smartphones to access text messages without cellular coverage. Voice and data will arrive later.

The start of a busy year for SpaceX, which launched a large new batch of low-orbit satellites on January 21 in total. The batch includes the first six satellites equipped with Direct to Cell capabilities.Which will allow you to use the new Starlink services for smartphones.

Read SpaceX has reached a milestone in 2023: 3 numbers to remember when it comes to space

Ultimately, it's about providing operators who want it with “ Uninterrupted global access to text messages, phone calls and web browsing, whether you're on land, on a lake or in coastal waters, without changing hardware or software There is no need to replace your old smartphone with a new one, as these functions can be accessed on any LTE device.

And this is a big advantage of this new service: at Apple, emergency calls via satellite are reserved for the latest iPhones (from iPhone 14). Starlink satellites do all the work, they integrate a modem. Progressing » eNodeB (Evolved NodeB) responsible for managing radio resources, controlling the user interface, routing data, and implementing mobility and security procedures.

Satellites actually act like cell phone towers in space. In the US, T-Mobile is one of the first partners of the SpaceX subsidiary, just like Salt in Switzerland (but no one in France).

Initially, within the year, the service will allow communication via text messages. Voice and data communications will arrive in 2025, which again is a big change compared to what Apple can offer, even if the services aren't as efficient as traditional cellular connectivity. Hence this solution can help you if you find yourself in an unknown place.

Read With Direct to Cell, Starlink will connect smartphones to its satellite network

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