- Product Dimensions: 20.3 x 20.3 x 5.1 cm ; 454 g
- Boxed-product Weight: 998 g
- Delivery Destinations: Visit the Delivery Destinations Help page to see where this item can be delivered.
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- Item model number: 25361604
- ASIN: B000O9FS1I
- Date first available at Amazon.co.uk: 23 April 2012
- Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 198,176 in Electronics (See Top 100 in Electronics)
Globalstar GSP-1700 Satellite Phone - Silver
- Airtime plans from just 10 EUR per month, pre-paid airtime now available as well
- Voice and Data Capabilities
- Send emails and surf the internet at speeds up to 56 kps (with OCENS compressed data services)
- Backlit colour display with 4 line, 12 character LCD
- Automatic System Select: Just turn up the satellite antenna, and your Globalstar phone will automatically seek out the Globalstar network
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Colour Name: Silver
The Globalstar GSP-1700 is the smallest and lightest Globalstar satellite phone and has an ergonomic design for user comfort and convenience. Weighing only 200g the GSP-1700 is easy to travel with and the antenna stows into the handset when not in use for even more compact carrying. This GSP-1700 listing is for the Copper coloured version.
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Top Customer Reviews
Cheap and East to use with fantastic call quality
No text message facility
Very occasional problem securing a fix on the network.
I have used in the UK, Norway, North Sweden, Canada, Portugal without any problems.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
I am just a causal user, not one the oil roughnecks on the tundra or the high-flying mountain climbers on the summit of K2. I live up here in Missoula, and a couple times of year I enjoy spending time back in the Bob Marshall Wilderness and a couple weeks a year at our timeshare in Los Cabos.
I bought the phone so that I can stay connected to the office [only when I need to], check and see how my kids are doing, and to do some email and web when needed. Fair enough.
I called Globalstar and asked them if they have service in Montana and Mexico. Funny, the Customer Care Rep. answered the question with an emphatic yes, before I even had the chance to finish the sentence. Were they even listening? I'm not so sure, and here's why.
I agree the phone service is not cheap - I had to pay $1.39/minute for roaming fees on top of my $49.95 monthly plan just to use it in Mexico. But when I signed up for service, I was told that I would get xxx number of minutes to use anywhere I want. I wasn't told that Mexico is not included in my minute package, and that was a surprise when I first saw my bill.
In terms of quality, the phone has worked "fair" to date. On some occasions, it has been nice to pick up the phone, make my call, and move on to other things. I just wish that was always the case. More often, I have to wait a lot to get my 3 bars. It's been very frustrating when the call drops, and the voice on the other end vanishes. Hello?.? It was an embarrassment when I gave my 1700 phone to my boss (I'll protect his identity) when we were down in Cabos together. I said, sure go ahead and use my Globalstar phone to call back home - you'll love it. He spent about 10 minutes standing waiting for a signal, and I am standing there sweating.
He didn't make his call.
Back in Montana Globalstar gave me another problem. I know the service has gotten better, but I also know that that is an overstatement.
Since gaps in service and dropped calls are a way of life on Globalstar, I always have to use Globalstar's Call Times Report to see when is the best time of the day that I can make calls on my phone from outside the Bob Marshall here in Montana. I printed the report, took it with me, and had a heck of a time still making calls that week. I followed the report to the T, and it still did not work. I called Globalstar Tech Support and asked them why the Call Tool did not work. The rep then asked me, "are you in a mountainous area, or out in the open"? I found that mildly amusing, since I stated I was from Western Montana, trying to use the phone next door to Glacier National Park. The Globalstar rep., responded by saying, "well I am sorry but the Call Tool does not take into account mountains or other obstructions to the sky". That's why I bought the phone to begin with. And, why have such a tool if it cannot emulate real world scenarios?
The long and short is, the phone and customer support has always given me trouble. When I bought the phone, I was told that there are "monthly service plans", so I signed up for them. It was implied that I can use the phone on a monthly basis. Turns out, all plans require a 12 month contract (even on monthly plans), and if I did terminate service prior to the contract term, I have to pay an early termination penalty. So now I am stuck with this phone and service, and have to wait until my 1-year contract is up before I unload on it.
In short, I am weary of Globalstar's blind statements that "service is better now", etc. Truthfulness and full disclosure don't seem to be a part of their nomenclature.
It's now Saturday and I want to talk to someone at Globalstar and put this all to rest, but I just got a recording that Customer Support is closed up on the weekends. Is anyone there or does anyone care?
Would anyone like to buy a used Globalstar phone? It's in very good condition, and has been hardly used..
There is nothing wrong with the phones, they are well made, fairly rugged and have nice features. The problem is with
the Globalstar Company. Take your worst nightmare experience dealing with a phone company than multiply it times 10.
At first the phone worked, then their satelites "degraded" until they wouldn't work anywhere at at time, at least long enough
to make a phone call. I was stupid enough to believe there lies that the system would be back to normal by the end of the year,year after year after year. I finally got an Iridium phone and called to cancel my Globalstar account, they then converted my account to strictly pay per use, just to keep their customer base looking good.
As soon as they succeeded in partially restoring the network they canceled my account without notifying me, then sent me an email begging me to reopen my account. These guys are hoodlums that if there was any kind of consumer protection, they would have been indicted by now. They did settle a class action suit against them a few years ago for charging for services they were not providing, but as with most suits of these kinds the lawyers that filed them made some money, the rest of us got a token credit, and that prevented further action against them. Like a lot of phone companies the only thing these guys were good at was sending the bill like clockwork. and those bills were full of mistakes, charges for services not rendered,
credits promised but not applied that counted on you giving up before wrangling endlessly with their billing department.
If you need a sat phone, pay a little more and get one you can count on, Iridium
I've only had mine a couple weeks but my initial impression is good.
Be sure to check out the "Globalstar call times tool" on their website. Their service has indeed improved from "horrendous" to "barely tolerable", a big improvement. At one time the phone only worked a few minutes each hour. Now across most of the US its more like 45 minutes or so with their recent launch of satellites by the Russians.
When I first got the phone it was immediately a warm and fuzzy feeling of back to the stone-age. Because it looks and works like a cell phone from 10 years ago. That was kind of a disappointment because the user interface is so clunky and dated.
Once you get past that and extend the giant antenna, it picks up a signal in a couple minutes (assuming its not too cloudy and you are in your calling time window and are standing in an open field with the antenna pointing straight up).
That is when the phone really shines. Crystal clear and NO LATENCY like a "normal" satellite phone. The low earth orbit is the reason why. With a regular satellite phone there is a huge delay and its more like a walkie talkie. With globalstar the people I called thought I was on a regular cell phone.
Other negatives are overpriced accessories like a spare battery or data cable. Hopefully the Chinese will step up to the plate and make some cheap clones.
A bit pricey if you count the price and one year at $39.95 I am into this about $900. And expect them to raise the rate again in a year if they continue to launch satellites and improve the service.
But I like to go backpacking in wilderness and its worth it for my piece of mind.
Besides the clunky interface Globalstar is also a little stone-age. I had to fax in a spreadsheet to activate the account, then pester the customer service email address to find out when it was active. Sheesh you'd think if they could launch a satellite they could launch a few web pages and let you register online.
You can tell if your dealer is a crook (like mine) because they never bother to mention that Globalstar only works some of the time. Fortunately I already knew that. Honest dealers are supposed to tell you in advance.
But I'm giving it 4 stars for now because its working as well as expected.
It supports a data connection via USB through an optional (but sadly, proprietary) USB cable. Data rates are acceptable, and the data service is included in the $20/month plan. Overall, the accessories are a bit expensive as with Iridium and Thuraya products, but I'm happy to support Globalstar.
So, the catch to a cheap phone and unbelievably cheap service? Globalstar's first generation satellites have begun to fail and Globalstar is around half way complete in launching the second generation system. For most people in North America, this means a typical call time is about an average of 15 minutes, with the maximum being 45 minutes (or sometimes longer in some cases) before the call is dropped. Once the launches are complete, the service will return to the same great reliability they were known for in the late nineties. As my dealer put it, Globalstar is looking to become "the WalMart of satellite communications." Service area is most of the world with the exception of southern Africa and the poles.
Service quality, when connected, is amazing. There is no detectable lag or delay as Globalstar uses a bent pipe system, in that what gets sent to the satellite gets routed to a ground station without going through additional satellites. The call quality is compressed minimally, and to me sounds far better than a cell phone and just as good as most landlines!
I highly reccomend investing in both a GSP-1700 now (they come in three colors!) and a 1-year service contract. I suspect that the price will remain at or around $20, but wouldn't be surprised as the reliability increases that the price will too. So grab a year of service now and lock in this amazing deal. This is a priceless and valuable tool to have if you travel out of the range of cell service. In the case of a natural disaster, this will continue to function beautifully even after cell phone towers are jammed, destroyed, or turned off such as in the case of Hurricane Katrina.