Elon Musk Joins Network Operator To Offer Smartphone Service Under Water, Remote Areas

Elon Musk Joins Network Operator To Offer Smartphone Service Under Water, Remote Areas

2 years ago
1 min read

Come 2023, smartphone users will be able to use their mobile service under the water, thanks to the partnership between satellite firm, SpaceX, and network operator, T-Mobile.

Both SpaceX, the parent firm of internet operator, Starlink, and T-Mobile, are partnering to utilise their services to enable smartphone users to operate their cell in a remote area without exchanging them for the larger satellite phone.

The current smartphones are designed to connect with cell towers within about 10 km (6 mi), making it impossible for users to operate their mobile service in remote areas without cell towers. 

However, with a satellite-connected phone, smartphone service remains connected 500 km away. And with SpaceX operating 2,700 satellites in the orbit, the firm owned by Elon Musk, T-Mobile will connect to Starlink’s second-generation satellites. 

Although the connection will not enable voice call in remote areas, Prime Business Africa learnt that messaging, MMS and some messaging apps will continue to function. 

Smartphone service under water

This access will only be made available to T-Mobile users in the United States, Alaska, Puerto Rico and Hawaii. 

Recall that in August, SpaceX founder, Elon Musk, had stated on Twitter that, “Starlink V2, launching next year, will transmit direct to mobile phones, eliminating dead zones worldwide.” 

Also, during a joint session in August between Musk and T-Mobile Chief Executive Officer, Mike Sievert, the former world’s richest person said, “This won’t have the kind of bandwidth a Starlink terminal will have, but this will enable texting, it will enable images and if there aren’t too many people in the cell zone, you can even potentially have a little bit of video.” 

Musk also stated that, “We will no longer read about these tragedies that happened where people got lost an if only they could have called for help they’d be ok.” 

The SpaceX boss and Sievert said network operators outside the US could join their satellite network, with T-Mobile stating there will be “reciprocal roaming,” for persons visiting the US.


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