Telus tests out two-way satellite-to-smartphone comms

What makes this announcement noticeably different from the many D2D proclamations that have been made this year is the use of a GEO satellite

There are now two horses in the race to provide satellite direct-to-device (D2D) services in Canada’s celebrated wilderness.

Telus this week laid claim to being the first Canadian operator to successfully carry out two-way comms between smartphones and IoT devices on the ground and Echostar T1, a geostationary Earth orbit (GEO) satellite.

Telus has partnered with TerreStar, which operates a satellite network under the Strigo brand, and Skylo, which has developed a connectivity platform that offers seamless roaming between off-the-shelf devices and non-terrestrial networks (NTNs).

Telus reeled off the usual satellite use cases we’ve come to expect, including emergency/back-up comms; fleet tracking; and connectivity for adventurous hikers, remote workers and isolated IoT sensors and the like.

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