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Lynk sends 1st text message from space to unmodified phone on ground

Author : Saipriya Iyer | Published Date : 2020-03-19 

Lynk, formerly known as UbiquitiLink, has recently announced a breakthrough in sending a text message to a regular Android phone, using a satellite in orbit. This breakthrough demonstrates the technology that is essential for efficient global cell connectivity from space. The company sent its first text message via payload attached to a Cygnus spacecraft, reading ‘This is a test’, which was received at the Falkland Islands by an unmodified Android phone while the capsule passed overhead.

To test the technology, the company launched its 3rd party test payload, aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket, to the ISS (International Space Station) in December 2019. Astronauts on space station then attached the payload to a Cygnus cargo, which was later detached to linger in orbit. Lynk, among other companies, is also currently planning to build a constellation of various satellites to connect with people on the ground and provide cell service for average mobile phones rather than offering broadband internet coverage.

Charles Miller, Lynk’s co-founder & CEO has reportedly stated that the company is the first to adopt the satellite system to send a text message from space to an unmodified mobile phone on the ground. Currently, in order to get satellite connectivity, mobile users must either purchase an accessory that allows connection with a vehicle in orbit or purchase a specialized satellite phone. Mr. Miller also claimed that this technology will deliver seamless experience to normal mobile phone users as well as provide global cell service when the user is out of range from any other network options or cell towers, which is why it could be a much bigger and critical deal than 5G.

Mr. Miller further added that the company is planning to implement the first global services, most probably by years end, after getting approval from regulators as well as gaining support of its mobile network partners. The company’s major goal, in addition to providing connectivity to the world, is to develop a technology to warn people of potential disasters using “Everyone Everywhere Emergency” alerts.

Source credit:

https://www.theverge.com/2020/3/18/21184126/lynk-mega-constellation-text-message-android-smartphone-cell-towers-space

About Author

Saipriya Iyer

Saipriya Iyer

Saipriya Iyer presently works as a content developer for fractovia.org. Having dabbled with the domain of content creation for nearly half a decade, she now boasts of an enviable portfolio, holding substantial experience in penning down pieces related to technology, finance, and a wide spectrum of other industry verticals. A qualified computer engineering graduate from the University of Pune, Saipriya can often be found leveraging her knowledge of software technology and electronics in her write-ups. She can be contacted at- [email protected] | https://twitter.com/saipriya_i

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