RESTON, VA. —
TerreStar opened up sales of its Genus
satellite-cellular smartphone to consumer users for
the first time.
The candy-bar-style phone with touchscreen and
hard QWERTY keyboard communicates through
AT&T’s terrestrial network and TerreStar’s satellite. It’s
available through multiple websites operated by Simplexity,
which manages other companies’ online cellphone-
sales sites and its own
can get to the online sellers via TerreStar’s site.
AT&T also said it has begun offering the phone to
consumers, having started several months ago to offer
it to the government, enterprise and
small-business markets at $799 with
For consumers, the Windows
6.5 device costs $1,149 with contract.
The phone is promoted
as the industry’s first satellite/
cellular smartphone and first
satellite phone with an internal
The phone incorporates
quadband GSM and
HSDPA to connect to
cellular networks. It uses
2.2GHz HSDPA to communicate via Internet Protocol
to TerreStar’s satellite, which provides service to the
U.S. and Canada. The device needs only one phone
number to be contacted via cellular or satellite network.
Phone features include 100MB of memory, Bluetooth,
Wi-Fi, GPS and USB.
The phone, said TerreStar, is smaller than other cellular-
satellite phones, thanks to a 4.7-inch by 2.5-inch
chassis that’s 0.6 to 0.8 inches in depth.
For consumers, the phone provides an insurance
policy, enabling them to stay in touch from desolate locations,
participating in extreme sports, or enjoying a
vacation in a remote area of the U.S., the company said.
Customers just need a clear view of the southern sky
to connect to TerreStar’s satellite.
A video of the product is available on YouTube.