Satellite communications company Iridium today announced Iridium GO!, a portable hotspot that runs from the heavens down to your Android or iOS smartphone. While larger than your traditional Wifi hotspot, GO! is just 4.5 by 3.25 b 1.25 inches and weighs 10.4 ounces. You can mount it externally — remember that it'll need line-of-sight to the satellites — but it's not meant to be a permanent outdoor solution.
Voice and data are routed through the Iridium GO! app. You'll get about 4 hours' talk time, the company says. It's not a dumb data pipe — again, things have to be routed through the app — but Iridium will have an SDK for developers to tie into. Initial partners include:
- OCENS – Transforming GRIB and classical weather, ocean and fishing data into interactive decision tools
- Global Marine Networks (GMN) – Optimized email services for maritime use
- Satcom Direct – Mobile applications that enable connectivity for passengers while in flight
- Appareo Systems – Engineering and manufacturing of electronics, software and data communications solutions for aviation and agriculture
- DeLorme – Communication, information, and safety applications
- AIRSIS – Solutions for the energy and transportation industries
- JouBeh Technologies – Innovative Iridium OEM hardware and software solutions provider for various applications
This isn't a product for most of us. And while price wasn't announced, expect it to be around the $800 range. But for those who need satellite communications, it's going to be a great option.