Cell Phone Advances Coming Your Way


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Well-known member
Sep 4, 2003
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Not quite yet
I’ve been reading rumors about new features potentially included in the iPhone 14 due for release next month.

A real shocker is SPOT capability that enables the phone to contact satellites to relay a distress signal and GPS coordinates.

No details about which satellites or who gets the distress alert.

Article also said Android phone mfgrs are also looking to bake this tech into future models.

Could be a game changer for companies like InReach.
And of course Elon Musk is hyping the future ability to text from a future T-mobile cell phone to Starlink.. Of course, the current constellation of satellites do not have this capability and new one with antennas will need to be launched which will raise the ire of astronomers. https://www.techspot.com/news/95778-t-mobile-use-starlink-satellites-blanket-us-text.html Note the reference at the end of the article to the Iphone Globalstar.

Meanwhile ATT is rapidly expanding their First Net coverage to cover rural areas for first responders. They are reportedly developing the first net capability and then piggybacking commercial sites at many locations. So time to become a first responder to get cheap priority cell coverage in rural areas. https://www.firstnet.com/ It is interesting that even first net has some large patches of rural north western Maine and Northern NH that they do not plan to cover.

Lots of money trying to stake out tech to get around cell limitations. Given the major power and line of site requirements of 5G, I dont see it in other than dense high use areas.
Given the major power and line of site requirements of 5G, I dont see it in other than dense high use areas.

I don't know about that. I recently upgraded my phone (not for the 5G but I have it) and I am pretty surprised at the places I get a full 5G signal. Was not expecting that kind of coverage. Of course, I still only get 1 bar of 4G right in my yard in NE CT....
https://www.businessinsider.com/5g-...e a range,cell towers and antennas everywhere.

In order to get true high speed 5 G you need to be within 1000 feet of an antenna and line of site. That is lot of antennas and reportedly the power to run ahigh speed 5 G cell transmitter is much more than a 4 G cell site. Not going to see true 5 G in rural areas. https://www.reuters.com/technology/...arketing-outpaces-service-reality-2021-10-14/

My phone differentiates between 5G and 5G UltraWide, which no doubt is what you are referring to. Regular 5G is available in tons of places and seems quite a bit faster than 4G, whatever the hell it is doing and wherever the towers are located.
I'm a Starlink customer. Only way to get connectivity off-grid in a lot of places we camp. Since I have Google Fi, I can use wifi calling. No need to be within range of a cell tower. Skynet..er Starlink, is expanding the service to cell phones. It won't be fast enough for data, but will be fast enough for a phone call or text message. I think it may put some of the SPOT services out of business.
Am considering upgrade to iPhone 14, as my ACR beacon (SPOT alternative) is about 4 years old/has 5yr battery. Read there is a way you can share your location with friends/family via satellite using Apple’s “find my” app. Wonder if anyone has tried that while out of cell coverage/in SOS/satellite coverage?