Consumer affordable solutions such as Spot Connect
and DeLorme inReach
2 way satellite communication solutions pair with your bluetooth smartphone, allowing you to send and receive SMS, track and communicate your position, send predefined SMS and emergency mesages... and with a pinch of salt:"send" and "receive" "e-mails", "update" facebook and twitter... anywhere on the globes. But it is limited to very few caracters and no files. The DeLorme also has a "map" for navigation.
Still, what I really want is a small portable bluetooth satellite IP device/terminal (IP= internet and phone) with an app that works seemlessly with my phone and/or laptop, one which simply gives me full world wide Internet access at a tolerable speed for both upload and donload.... AN AFFORDABLE DEVICE/TERMINAL WITH AN AFFORDABLE SERVICE PLAN!!!
As of now, I am yet to find a solution that has all of these attributes. A small portable IP version is usually the size of a small netbook, lacks bluetooth connectivity, has no app for a phone. But, I could swallow this if the cost of the unit and the service plan was even remotely within the limits of the sane and mortal.
At the time of writing, a medium sized pre paid service plan of 255 mb/month easily exceeds $5 per mb - that is $ 1.300,- for a measely 255 mb! In adition you need the IP terminal itself, which will easily set you back $1.650,- for an entry level model such as the Wideye Sabre 1 BGAN Terminal
For me, the cost of both the terminal and the service plan for a big dumb lump like the one above has to come down to 1/10th of the current rates, that means 130,- for the unit, an 50c/mb. For a pal sized unit or smaller, with blue tooth and a clever smart phone app, I could probably fork over 500 bucks...
Hopefully this will hit the market soon.
If anyone kshould stumble over any clever, cool, and affordable devices and service plans, post it here - I would be interested.