Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Twitter Gets Satellite Access

timothy posted more than 2 years ago | from the how-to-monetize-per-country-filtering dept.

Communications 67

jimboh2k writes "Satellite operators Iridium and Thuraya have signed on to provide access for Twitter users outside of normal mobile coverage. The service acts like the SMS function already available on the social network, allowing users to tweet during emergencies."

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

Really? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39017177)

Iridium isn't dead yet? Seriously, by any sane definition it must be regarded as undead at this point, meaning that all your tweets are belong to zombies. Glad the CDC had the good sense to formulate appropriate public health advisories to deal with this obvious threat. More details, including film, at 11.

Re:Really? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39017213)

I'm the OP. Just kidding, of course Iridium isn't dead. What used to be the company was restructured into a new corporation just as the original company was at the brink of bankruptcy. Funny enough, the restructuring resulted in a brand new shiny company operated out of McLean, VA USA, which just happens to be a cozy territory of various TLAs. Now, anyone with half a brain will understand why this occurred, and will subsequently translate the OP via s/zombies/TLAs/g. The jury is out on which is worse, given the fact that the CDC hasn't yet come up with effective means of dealing with widespread infection from the latter.

Re:Really? (1)

Jesse_vd (821123) | more than 2 years ago | (#39017239)

Who are these people with half a brain and in what way is their condition related to the zombies?

Re:Really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39017403)

Most of the second post was serious, but you did catch the embedded joke. Well played, sir.

Re:Really? (1)

The Askylist (2488908) | more than 2 years ago | (#39017399)

The TLAs will also recognise that allowing Twitter via satphone might, just might be useful when fomenting unrest in various countries.

obligatory relevant xkcd: (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39017181)

http://xkcd.com/723/

@ISS (4, Funny)

BlackPignouf (1017012) | more than 2 years ago | (#39017183)

@ISS, taking a dump.

Re:@ISS (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39017267)

I don't know who the user ISS is, or why he would care about you taking a dump, but I don't think Slashdot is the right medium for this message.

Re:@ISS (1)

Gwala (309968) | more than 2 years ago | (#39017317)

*whoosh*

Re:@ISS (4, Insightful)

subreality (157447) | more than 2 years ago | (#39017357)

Meta-whoosh!

Re:@ISS (2)

AVee (557523) | more than 2 years ago | (#39017601)

That's probably what they hear @IIS when someone takes a dump.

Re:@ISS (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39017323)

I don't know who the user ISS is, or why he would care about you taking a dump, but I don't think Slashdot is the right medium for this message.

Clearly that kind of information is only relevant for your closest friends. So you are indeed right, slashdot is not the right medium. Instead you should do like one of my friends did and post it to facebook instead.

Re:@ISS (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39017347)

Clearly that kind of information is only relevant for your closest friends.

Be honest. Are you the sort of chap who enjoys a hearty Cleveland steamer [urbandictionary.com] ?

Re:@ISS (1)

Sulphur (1548251) | more than 2 years ago | (#39018113)

Clearly that kind of information is only relevant for your closest friends.

Be honest. Are you the sort of chap who enjoys a hearty Cleveland steamer [urbandictionary.com] ?

I would guess that the "platform" would be very cross after that.

Re:@ISS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39018323)

I don't know who the user ISS is, or why he would care about you taking a dump, but I don't think Slashdot is the right medium for this message.

Clearly that kind of information is only relevant for your closest friends. So you are indeed right, slashdot is not the right medium. Instead you should do like one of my friends did and post it to facebook instead.

I think you misspelled "closet friends".

@sahara (5, Funny)

arcite (661011) | more than 2 years ago | (#39017207)

@sahara, flat tire, canteen empty, delirious, to follow mirage, please feed Rex.

Re:@sahara (1)

Cryacin (657549) | more than 2 years ago | (#39017751)

@Elbonia Help! Help! I'm being repressed!

Okay. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39017227)

Yeah, that's the first thing I think about in an emergency. Logging on to twitter and posting some bullshit. How useful.

Re:Okay. (5, Insightful)

Zorque (894011) | more than 2 years ago | (#39017353)

In many cases it's been a very useful tool for warning others about impending emergencies, or about letting the outside world know what's going on. It may not get you the help you need but it could save others from having to do the same.

Re:Okay. (1)

peragrin (659227) | more than 2 years ago | (#39017579)

only because it is an IM service that is actually fully cross platform and quick to use.

Re:Okay. (2)

Goaway (82658) | more than 2 years ago | (#39017631)

What's with that "only"?

Oh really? (1)

Viol8 (599362) | more than 2 years ago | (#39017717)

When? Name one example where someones life has actually been saved because someone else tweeted because they couldn't make a phone call to the emergency services.

Re:Oh really? (1)

mitoyarzun (1428713) | more than 2 years ago | (#39018301)

After the 2010 earthquake in Chile, I remember a guy who got stuck in a room and the phone lines were collapsed. The HSPA network was still alive, and he tweeted where he was and that he needed help. I don't know if he would've died, but it surely helped him.

Re:Oh really? (1)

kbielefe (606566) | more than 2 years ago | (#39020725)

Spoken like someone who has never been in a widespread emergency. Last April several tornadoes tore through our state, knocking out high voltage power lines and a lot of communications infrastructure. The few mobile towers that were still functioning were jammed with calls. 911 was flooded with minor emergencies. It took a couple days to get more than a handful of radio stations on the air, and we didn't have the power to run a TV. We heard that power would likely not be restored for more than a week. Our cell phone batteries were halfway drained when we woke up under these conditions, without the means to charge it.

Are you seriously going to spend all day wearing down your battery trying to make one phone call? No. You send out a tweet or a facebook post that says you're all right, but communication is terrible and you'll post an update in 8 hours or so.

Maybe our lives weren't directly saved by social networking, but I like to think saving bandwidth for people with true emergencies helped.

Re:Oh really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39024517)

To give credit where credit is due, SMS is what helped you out there. Not twitter.

Re:Oh really? (1)

thegrassyknowl (762218) | more than 2 years ago | (#39025353)

Two girls in Adelaide, Australia used facebook to be rescued from a drain they were stuck in. Ok, so they probably wouldn't have died, but...

http://dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1211909/Girls-trapped-storm-drain-use-Facebook-help--instead-phoning-emergency-services.html [dailymail.co.uk]

Re:Okay. (5, Interesting)

pla (258480) | more than 2 years ago | (#39017605)

Yeah, that's the first thing I think about in an emergency. Logging on to twitter and posting some bullshit. How useful.

Well, I suppose that counts as the obvious symmetry to the jackasses who, watching someone burn to death in a wrecked car, will whip out their cell phones - Not for anything so mundane as calling for (never mind actually trying to) help, mind you, but to record it for YouTube.

We've become a society of narcissists and voyeurs. Welcome to the dawning of a new age.

Re:Okay. (1, Interesting)

rockout (1039072) | more than 2 years ago | (#39017775)

There's nothing new about old people comparing "today's society" to the utopia that supposedly existed in their own youth, and proclaiming the end of civilization as we know it.

Re:Okay. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39029087)

i know right! old people these days

Re:Okay. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39017983)

What about logging on twitter and posting "I need help, I'm at coordinates X" (especially if you happened e.g. to be hiking when the disaster hit, so people would not know where to search you)? Or if you were lucky, "I'm alive and well, don't worry about me"?

Re:Okay. (1)

spectro (80839) | more than 2 years ago | (#39018403)

I don't think getting news that your loved ones are ok after one of the biggest earthquakes in history is bullshit.

Here in Texas, I was driving back from a concert with my Cousin when she got a text from her bf in Chile about the earthquake just a minute after it ended. We were able to get "I'm ok" news from all our family living there within the first hour after the quake thanks to SMS.

Twitter started as a system where you could send an SMS that would be broadcasted to all your friends (subscribers). In fact you can still register your cellphone and use it to send updates instead of logging in. You can also set it to send you SMS every time specific people you follow posts updates.

The big earthquakes both in Chile and Japan proved SMS is a very useful form of communication in times of crisis: while voice lines got easily saturated making it almost impossible to talk to someone there, text messages kept being delivered quickly.

In Space... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39017301)

No one can hear you Tweet!

cGOck (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39017335)

NIGGER community

@us_sub (5, Funny)

SpaceCracker (939922) | more than 2 years ago | (#39017355)

@us_sub, just launched icbm + nuclear warhead. more info on wikileaks.

Actually a good match (4, Insightful)

subreality (157447) | more than 2 years ago | (#39017367)

I tried hard to be cynical about this, but really it's a pretty good match. Twitter's enforced lo-fi nature makes it a perfect format for a high cost per bit medium like satellite, but it's used in bulk enough to justify access plans with moderate usage instead of trying to milk corporate customers for $1/packet or something. Perhaps the constellation operators have finally found their market.

Re:Actually a good match (1)

DamageLabs (980310) | more than 2 years ago | (#39017419)

Oh yes, however dumb it seems at first, it is a very good business decision. This will give them a push into some lower tier markets.

Tweeting from the middle of Atlantic is good for everybody.

Re:Actually a good match (2)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 2 years ago | (#39017565)

Last time I took the QE-II I was able to use internet. so unless you are tweeting from a container ship or a life raft it's stupid.

Re:Actually a good match (1)

subreality (157447) | more than 2 years ago | (#39017639)

trying to milk corporate customers for $1/packet or something

... And somehow I remind myself that terrestrial cellular providers are charging $0.20 per packet for SMS. I tried to exaggerate some without being completely ridiculous, but marking up a mere 5x for satellite access is actually quite conservative. That's messed up.

Re:Actually a good match (1)

simoncpu was here (1601629) | more than 2 years ago | (#39018035)

I'm from the Philippines, and unlimited SMS and/or calls cost around $8/month. For prepaid plans, SMS costs $0.02 - $0.04 per message, and calls cost $0.15 - $0.30 per minute. Relatively fast 3G/HSDPA costs $1/day for prepaid, or $19/month for postpaid.

Re:Actually a good match (2)

jrmcferren (935335) | more than 2 years ago | (#39019909)

Actually via satellite SMS is around $0.43 each. Phone calls can be over $1.50 a minute.

Re:Actually a good match (2)

GonzoPhysicist (1231558) | more than 2 years ago | (#39021703)

I don't about SMS and what system you're on, but I send emails via the Globalstar and Orbcomm systems and they cost around $0.10 a pop or about $30 a month for unlimited.

wedding dresses (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39017379)

There are so many styles of wedding dresses, among them ball gown wedding dresses [rainingblossoms.com] is my favoutite style and I also think that simple wedding dresses [rainingblossoms.com] are hard to offer a unique look.

Bypassing censorship? (4, Insightful)

taiwanjohn (103839) | more than 2 years ago | (#39017429)

Will this allow people in $DICTATORSHIP to stay connected even when their government has blocked normal internet access?

Re:Bypassing censorship? (2)

hcs_$reboot (1536101) | more than 2 years ago | (#39017477)

in $DICTATORSHIP

in @DICTATORSHIP, unfortunately.

Re:Bypassing censorship? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39017483)

Depends if the companies owning the satellites are taxing in $DICTATORSHIP or not.

Re:Bypassing censorship? (1)

Cryacin (657549) | more than 2 years ago | (#39017761)

Yeah, didn't work too well for those livng in Zimbabwe. It's now $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$Dictatorship.

Re:Bypassing censorship? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39018047)

At least everyone there is a billionaire [wordpress.com] .

REally? (4, Funny)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 2 years ago | (#39017561)

" allowing users to tweet during emergencies"

If your addiction is that bad, please get some help. during emergencies you need to be paying attention to your safety and the safety of others not tweeting "day 14 without any food, no idea where to go, Wish I had a GPS instead of this crap Iridium phone."

Re:REally? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39017611)

"@help, stuck under rubble, need rescue"

Re:REally? (1)

jonbryce (703250) | more than 2 years ago | (#39017677)

Twitter is very useful for letting rescuers know where people are and what problems/dangers they are facing; and for rescuers to let people on the ground know what to do to prepare for their arrival, eg get out of a particular area of flat land so the helicopter can land on it, get outside and wave so that they can find them etc.

Uh huh (1)

Viol8 (599362) | more than 2 years ago | (#39017729)

I think you'll find phone calls and 2 way radios are even better at doing that.

Re:Uh huh (1)

jonbryce (703250) | more than 2 years ago | (#39017779)

For 1 to 1 contact, yes, but not for general announcements and for getting an overall assessment of the situation.

Re:Uh huh (1)

Viol8 (599362) | more than 2 years ago | (#39018263)

You're kidding, right?

Re:Uh huh (1)

jonbryce (703250) | more than 2 years ago | (#39019085)

No.

I'm thinking major natural disaster like an earthquake, not someone calling mountain rescue because they are in difficulties.

Re:REally? (2)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 2 years ago | (#39017889)

I have an iridium phone. and I would much rather have a GPS in an emergency.

Iridium phones are like the ultra basic Phones from 1999. it also has crap for battery life so it will be useless in less than 1 day. The Iridium Extreme is the ONLY phone that has a GPS in it as well to send your location to search and rescue, that phone is expensive as hell compared to the basic iridium.

Instead of doing something stupid like blowing $1000 on a Iridium phone and a basic plan.

If you really care about safety you will get a http://shop.delorme.com/OA_HTML/DELibeCCtpSctDspRte.jsp?section=10820&minisite=10020/ [delorme.com] Delorme In reach. as it's affordable and does not require you to spend a few hundred monthly to keep the thing active.

And you have always been able to "tweet" from an iridium phone. Iridium lets you SMS message. and you can SMS your twitter account. But only the filthy rich or those of us that actually hike in areas without cellphone coverage have Iridium, like my favorite... The wilds of alaska or canada.

I would rather someone spend the money on a good bug out bag and a small GPS than an Iridium phone.

Re:REally? (1)

arcite (661011) | more than 2 years ago | (#39019589)

Iridium is useful in conflict areas where governments/terrorists shut down local cellphone networks. Iridium has its uses. I have one here in Egypt for emergencies, as the cellphone networks were turned off here during the last revolution.

Re:REally? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39021371)

But you are wealthy. The average american cant afford one let alone the average Egyptian, Iraqi,etc...

Iridium is awesome for the ultra rich, useless for the average and poor.

Re:REally? (1)

GonzoPhysicist (1231558) | more than 2 years ago | (#39021811)

Another option here would be to use a "Spot" devise that emails your GPS cords to someone, the new ones can send a short message along too. They are in the hundred dollar range and subscription is about that much yearly.

Just tried it - works great (2)

lawrencebillson (1136239) | more than 2 years ago | (#39017823)

I just tried it. It took a couple of tries to register but it works great.

1995 called (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39018031)

wants its PAGERS back.

Cheap Ralph Lauren Polo shirt outlet (1)

lgxfly (2527120) | more than 2 years ago | (#39018251)

Cheap Ralph Lauren [cheapralph...outlet.com] is a noble movement, the participants often wear knitting short-sleeved sports which are derived from tennis clothing.Ralph Lauren Outlet [cheapralph...outlet.com] , making this kind of sportswear evolved into mass, this is his achievements.Ralph Lauren Polo shirt [cheapralph...outlet.com] is the successful masterpiece of modern fashionable clothing. Polo shirt on sale [cheapralph...outlet.com] store is the best place to spot cheap Polo shirt [cheapralph...outlet.com] , discount Polo Ralph Lauren [cheapralph...outlet.com] . As a matter of fact, Ralph Lauren polo [cheapralph...outlet.com] is famous for men and women Ralph Lauren polo [cheapralph...outlet.com] , for their fashion styles and high quality.

This isn't really new, (2)

raitchison (734047) | more than 2 years ago | (#39018771)

SPOT has had the ability to post to Twitter or Facebook via satellite for a while now with their SPOT Connect product.

http://www.findmespot.com/en/index.php?cid=116 [findmespot.com]

Re:This isn't really new, (1)

Tugrik (158279) | more than 2 years ago | (#39022621)

Downside to the SPOT solution: It only allows for 41 character on-the-fly tweets (you can do longer if they're pre-defined but those are much less useful). It also goes through their custom gateway and slaps extra formatting and geo-tagging to your tweet that you may not want. So while functional it's of less value than a native 140-character tweet-via-shortcode like TFA talks about. Globalstar (and their SPOT division) need to step up and provide the same functionality, IMHO.

Re:This isn't really new, (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39083705)

Second downside -- Globalstar is not a global system, as the name implies.

Re:This isn't really new, (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39025727)

Spot uses Globalsat which has poorer coverage then the Iridium network.
The DeLorme inReach can post to Twitter as well as Facebook and contact GEOS as well.
The BriarTek Cerebus can do the same
as well as the Yellowbrick
and the Shout Nano

and a whole bunch of other devices on Iridium...

Welcome to the connected "I have to tell you I just shat in the woods even outside cell coverage" age

We Are Watching You (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39020837)

Extra satellite, so folks can be arrested anywhere, world-wide, for their silly Twitters? Hooray! :-(

awesome..but..It appears to be partly broken too (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39083767)

I play a lot outside of cellular coverage, so its nice to be able to stay in touch. Before I have had to use some awful twittermail.com and selective facebook tweet hack. Now i am happy to see the 40404 shortcode hitting the Iridium network.

Seems to work fine, although, the text messages from twitter come in as 404047. Maybe someone mistyped when they provisioned the connection? You can't reply to the message and have to make a new message to 40404. This is an extra headache since the menu interface on the Iridium 9555 is horrid.

Check for New Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?