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Motorola "Defy" Satellite Link Attachment for Smartphones

Glenn MacGrady

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"Upgrade your smartphone into a satellite-enabled messenger with the motorola defy satellite link, a Bluetooth accessory that unlocks a whole new world of affordable always-on connectivity."


This device is small, waterproof, costs $149 USD, and apparently requires one of several payment plans from Bullitt Satellite Connect for as low as $4.99 USD per month.


Here's the satellite coverage map:


Perhaps members who have other satellite messaging devices could take the time to read up on this device and compare its features and costs to those other devices.
 
It's new, of course, and that can be a problem for a while BUT more significant, if I understand it, people you message have to use a Defy app. That's quite different than other satellite communicators I've looked at. That said, if I hadn't recently bought a Zoleo, I'd buy a Defy because it's least expensive by a lot and I only use it for messaging to my wife, no weather, gps, etc.
 
These three video reviews of the Defy are a bit long to watch, but they are very informative. The first describes the basic functions and compares Defy to other satellite devices such as inReach and Zoleo. The second goes into great detail as to how the SOS function works and how the related insurance coverage compares to competitors. The third video discusses some issues with connections to the satellite systems. All in all, this device looks very competitive.



 
Interesting concept. Not being able to drop breadcrumbs/tracks is a deal breaker for me. (It sounds like this will be available at some point)I still use a SPOT Gen 3. I often venture into the back country by myself. I always have the tracking function turned on. I figure if I can't activate the emergency button, at least people will know my general location.

I think this product may be a little late with this product. Some cell phones can already use satellite messaging. Soon most high end phones will have it.

Happy New Year!
 
Not being able to drop breadcrumbs/tracks is a deal breaker for me. (It sounds like this will be available at some point)

I've never used a signaling device other than a PLB (which I never had to activate), so I don't know how important breadcrumbs are for those who just want to have the ability to send "check in okay" texts or an SOS. But one of the videos does say that breadcrumbing is planned for future models.

I think this product may be a little late with this product. Some cell phones can already use satellite messaging. Soon most high end phones will have it.

I could be wrong, but I don't see satellite phoning as being a necessary or desirable feature for the billions of average users in cities and suburbia. For wilderness trippers, satellite-enabled cell phones might be worth it but are likely to be quite expensive. The Defy seems to be significantly less expensive than any other satellite texting/SOS device on the market today.

Pricing will probably be the big driver of future success, as the tech all seems similar. We shall see.
 
I've never used a signaling device other than a PLB (which I never had to activate), so I don't know how important breadcrumbs are for those who just want to have the ability to send "check in okay" texts or an SOS. But one of the videos does say that breadcrumbing is planned for future models.



I could be wrong, but I don't see satellite phoning as being a necessary or desirable feature for the billions of average users in cities and suburbia. For wilderness trippers, satellite-enabled cell phones might be worth it but are likely to be quite expensive. The Defy seems to be significantly less expensive than any other satellite texting/SOS device on the market today.

Pricing will probably be the big driver of future success, as the tech all seems similar. We
I've never used a signaling device other than a PLB (which I never had to activate), so I don't know how important breadcrumbs are for those who just want to have the ability to send "check in okay" texts or an SOS. But one of the videos does say that breadcrumbing is planned for future models.



I could be wrong, but I don't see satellite phoning as being a necessary or desirable feature for the billions of average users in cities and suburbia. For wilderness trippers, satellite-enabled cell phones might be worth it but are likely to be quite expensive. The Defy seems to be significantly less expensive than any other satellite texting/SOS device on the market today.

Pricing will probably be the big driver of future success, as the tech all seems similar. We shall see.

New iPhones come with the ability to send locations and SOS messages via satellite.


The tracking feature is important to me because I ride a dual sport motorcycle. I could be miles from where people expect me to be. If I crashed and was unable to activate the SOS button, people would know the general area that I was in. This applies to any back country activities. When people go missing in the back country, they are often not found where the searchers expected.

Cost is a factor as well. I already own a SPOT device. I am not sure what the newer version costs, but I think mine was 75 dollars on sale. I think the newer basic one is about 150.00. My monthly premium is about 11.00 per month for the basic plan. The Defy unit basic plan is cheaper.
 
Another benifit of the Defy is actual 2 way messaging. With my old SPOT I can only send pre made messages to phones or emails and I do not recieve any conformation that they were received.

I do kind of like that I can't recieve messages ...
 
If I understand, I think the only shortcoming, and slight, is that the defy requires all to use an app. I think most others, Zoleo for sure, just uses the common text and email apps.

6 months ago I upgraded from Spot 2 to Zoleo for my wife's benefit, but I think today I'd go with Defy. Considerably less expensive plan. As it is, I suspect most ordinary cell phones will have satelite connectivity in a year or two at most.
 
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