HOW THURAYA WORKS
Thuraya is a satellite phone service provider that covers most of Europe, the Middle East, Central, South and East Asia, North and Central Africa, Australia and some of the Pacific areas. This area (seen on the map below) is covered since March 2008. More information on countries within the coverage area, with details on some specific areas, can be found in the Thuraya 2008 coverage article. (The previous coverage area can be seen here).
The Thuraya network uses at the moment three GEO satellites. The last one, Thuraya-3, was placed on geosynchronical transfer orbit on January 15th, 2008.
Thuraya offers both voice and data services. The audio quality of the voice communication is comparable to GSM quality, while data transfers are up to 9.6 Kbps.
Due to the fact that the Thuraya satellites are placed on high orbits, there is a noticable time delay in voice communication.
Most users will find Thuraya a cheaper alternative to other satellite phone service providers, though roaming into GSM networks (which is possible in the Thuraya network) can be quite expensive.
Thuraya offers handheld, vehicular and fixed satellite phones. The latest handhelds are theXT, SO-2510 and SG-2520. The Thuraya mobile satellite system is a turnkey project built by Boeing Satellite Systems, formerly Hughes Space and Communications International, Inc. (HSCI), at the cost of US$ 1 billion. Designed for a 12-15 year lifespan, the Thuraya 2 satellite is positioned in Geosynchronous Orbit, 35,786 km (22,236 miles) above the Earth, at 44 degrees East Longitude and inclined at 6.3 degrees. The contract includes manufacture of two high power geo-synchronous satellites, the launch of the first satellite, manufacture and installation of the ground network equipment, the manufacture of nearly a quarter of a million mobile handsets and the project insurance.
Thuraya’s system has been adapted for efficient operation in both satellite and GSM environments. It provides high flexibility in managing network resources through a re-programmable satellite payload. This supports modifications to the system’s coverage area even in the post-launch period and optimises performance over high demand areas.
Thuraya’s satellites have been specially designed to achieve network capacity of about 13,750 telephone channels. Thuraya’s hand held mobile terminals are comparable to GSM handsets in terms of size and appearance, as well as in voice quality.
- Thuraya's distinct advantage of integration of satellite, GSM and GPS in Thuraya’s handset allows the end user the flexibility use GSM networks and satellite beyond those networks. It also has built in Global Positioning System or GPS.
- Thuraya's flexible dual-mode technology allows you to automatically switch on to Thuraya satellite mode in areas that are outside the GSM terrestrial system.
- With Thuraya’s roaming capabilities, GSM subscribers will no longer suffer from ‘No Service’ whenever their home GSM operator service fails because they will switch to Thuraya and be able to roam on Thuraya’s network.
- Global Positioning System can be used as a navigational tool, a compass, to help you venture in unmapped, or unchartered areas. With the help of GPS you will know exactly where you are at any point of the globe.
- Thuraya offers voice, fax, data, short messaging and GPS in all Thuraya phones as standard features. In addition, you will be able to make use of services like Caller Line Identity Presentation (CLIP), Call Forwarding, Call Waiting, Call Hold, Call Barring, Call Transfer and Conference Calling.
- Thuraya offers the Fixed Docking Unit (FDU)- the home/office docking product, which allows the usage of the Thuraya phone in an indoor environment such as home or office. Satel complements the Thuraya phone by extending its operations and functionalities inside buildings.
- Thuraya's" Vehicular Docking Adapter"(VDA) provides a station for the HHT recharging and in-vehicle operations. The VDA complements the Thuraya phone allowing easy usage in moving vehicles.
- While you are in the Thuraya coverage area, you can use the Thuraya phone to call anywhere in the world and receive a call from anywhere in the world. Once outside the Thuraya coverage area, you will be able to use the Thuraya phone on GSM mode in areas that are served by compatible GSM networks and with whom Thuraya has signed a roaming agreement.
- Thuraya works closely with service providers to offer its range of services to local markets. Thuraya complements GSM networks allowing subscribers to remain connected to their national mobile networks, and to access Thuraya’s system whenever their preferred cellular network is unavailable.
- Thuraya’s service will be valuable to a wide variety of users: regional roamers to international travelers, international transportation fleets to national marine operators, relief and rescue crews to workers of remote industrial sites.
Thuraya’s uses a Geo mobile satellite system that are proven to be highly secure and reliable in terms of technology. The inherent GEO characteristics means lower usage cost for customers. In addition, the GEO’s satellites are not expensive to maintain and are less likely to be replaced because of its longer lifespan. GEO satellites are also the longest tested in the satellite history.
Countries within Thuraya's extensive coverage area:
Isle of Man
Papua New Guinea
Republic of Korea
United Arab Emirates
ThurayaLocateTM -- we go further, you stay safer
a no-charge service for displaying the location of any Thuraya phone.
Thuraya is pleased to announce the launch of ThurayaLocate, a free of charge GPS locating service that grants you an added sense of security by giving you the ability to send your location details from your Thuraya handset to family, friends, business associates or emergency services.
Developed by Geonix, the service works by:
• The Thuraya subscriber registering their handset for the ThurayaLocate service via www.thurayalocate.com
• Upon registration, the subscriber will receive a username and password to access the service. The subscriber decides which authorized people they will share the username and password with.
• After registering, the user acquires their GPS position using the standard features available on Thuraya handsets.
• This information is then sent manually via SMS to the ThurayaLocate operations center.
• The authorized parties log on to the website with the subscriber username and password.
• The web browser displays the handset location using maps, satellite images and aerial photography made available via Google Maps or Windows Virtual Earth.
Visit www.thurayalocate.com for more information and to register for the service.