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8200rpm
06-09-2010, 2:14 PM
I'm clueless when it comes to smartphones. I was wondering what the consensus is on the best smartphone on the market.

I don't need it for business, but I like the idea of having internet access, maps, and an organizer/calendar on my phone. Some of the iPhone apps seem pretty interesting and maybe even useful. I don't know what I don't know.

So, give me your thoughts. Steer me in the right direction. Opinions and total BS welcome. Thanks.

GP3
06-09-2010, 2:17 PM
This will be a iPhone vs. Android thread :laugh:

iPhone is like a Mac. It does what it's supposed to do, and you can't really dig into the guts to make it faster or screw it up.

Android OS phones are like a PC. It does what it's supposed to do, and you can really dig into the guts to make it faster, or screw it up.

shellyzsweet
06-09-2010, 2:21 PM
Oh boy.....smartphones are like guns....everyone has their own opinion on which one to get.

Me personally....I got a BB storm, and I WILL NEVER BUY A BLACKBERRY AGAIN!
I use it for personal use and not buisness related, so I don't have a need for the blackberry security features.

My friend has a droid, she likes it....but seems to thick for me.

I've heard good and bad things about the iPhone.....personally, when my contract is up I'm gonna bite the bullet and have 2 phones, an iPhone 4, and I'm gonna fork out $$ for the droid incredible. I'll see which one I like the best and cancel the other one while keeping the phone. Seems foolish, and wayyy expensive, but I'll have my definitive answer and that in it of itself is worth it for me.

Jicko
06-09-2010, 2:26 PM
SHTF, your phone is going to be useless. Go back to the basics..... Communications, utilities, public safety infrastructure is going to be down and overwhelmed faster than you think. And depends on the nature and widespread of the S, you probably should think about how you and your family going to survive thru the initial phrase of the recovery, 24hrs, 72hrs, a wk or a month..... or more....

GP3
06-09-2010, 2:27 PM
True... I wouldn't rely on wireless carriers.

stormy_clothing
06-09-2010, 2:28 PM
none but of them all an iphone in an otterbox with a solar charger will probably be a good bet for durability and with the number of non phone features like a compass, reader for survival manuals and a flashlight = good stuff.

I am an android fan but in shtf for anything other than cell service which will probably be down anyway iphone

bigmike82
06-09-2010, 2:34 PM
You get an Iridium/Inmarsat phone if you actually want communications.

If you want other stuff, grab a Toughbook.

xrMike
06-09-2010, 2:54 PM
I think a handheld ham radio will be better in true SHTF.

XYZ
06-09-2010, 3:10 PM
"When all else fails," ham radio is the only thing that will be working when SHTF. Katrina is an example, so were the floods and the cell phone outage in Gilroy last year. The only thing to remember is that you and the person you're communicating with both need a license. FRS/GMRS is like CB and works in line of site operation - in an urban environment that's only about a 2mile radius depending on buildings and other obstruction.

Milsurps
06-09-2010, 3:33 PM
I think a handheld ham radio will be better in true SHTF.


HF Ham Radio would be even better. ;)

XYZ
06-09-2010, 3:38 PM
HF Ham Radio would be even better. ;)

+1. Upgrade from a tech to a general class license and the world literally opens up. No need to worry about a smartphone or repeaters at that point.

bigmike82
06-09-2010, 3:44 PM
"The only thing to remember is that you and the person you're communicating with both need a license."
Not in an emergency. ;)

Loner
06-09-2010, 9:15 PM
Nexus One obviously. Just wait for the SHTF app.

KillZone45
06-09-2010, 9:24 PM
I can guarantee if we have a SHTF/EMP phones will be useless. The best bet is a solar charger for your phone if you want to use a Survival app.

Kali-Jax
06-09-2010, 9:46 PM
Know how and common sense will be the smartphone of SHTF.

For work I love my BlackBerry Curve. Older one with the trackball.

shellyzsweet
06-09-2010, 10:05 PM
If you want other stuff, grab a Toughbook.

I love toughbooks!!!! TALK ABOUT AWESOME!!!

I can drop it onto a hard cement floor, dent the thing, break off pieces of plastic, then go out and type up my report in the rain!!!!

IDK about SHTF, but I LOVE TOUGHBOOKS!!!!

berto
06-09-2010, 10:32 PM
Will cell towers be functional? Will you be able to connect to the network?

Rob454
06-09-2010, 10:55 PM
Satellite phone will probably still work even if the regular carriers are down. i don't foresee a total breakdown of communications. With all the options we have in the country something somewhere will work weather its a cell, sat, HAM or POTS line. Unless a EMP goes and hits the whole country at once.

MontClaire
06-09-2010, 11:01 PM
It's an easy guess that in shtf cituation nobody will be able to make phone calls. Buy a radio and walkie talkie.

khw9mm
06-09-2010, 11:12 PM
None of it will matter if it's this kind of SHTF scenario

http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=310258

Anyhow, iPhone FTMFW!!! :D

Sajedene
06-09-2010, 11:17 PM
I love my blackberry.

Self proclaimed crackberry user!

It gives me everything and more.

Plus - I HATE TOUCH SCREEN! I can't stand smudges on the screen and I like my nails/manicure and the Iphone fails completely with that.

Besides, when SHTF I can toss it at something or someone. It can stand some damage before it breaks apart completely.

Teletiger7
06-09-2010, 11:18 PM
:43:Do torture test of all the smart phones and see which one survives:43:
What do you define as SHTF? You must be an optomist if in your idea of SHTF we'll still be able to make phone calls. Do you know how jammed up the phone networks would be if there was an event like a major eartquake in SoCal?

manuelcardenas77
06-09-2010, 11:20 PM
Wow a SHTF about smart phones.

khw9mm
06-09-2010, 11:25 PM
Wow a SHTF about smart phones.

You never saw THAT coming eh!!?? :p

Ricky-Ray
06-09-2010, 11:34 PM
Does it matter what phone you have??? If the carrier is down you SOL anyway. Even if the network is up or partially up everyone is going to be on it trying to make a call and the entire network will be jammed.

bigmike82
06-10-2010, 12:15 AM
Remember that a satellite phone *will* work unless the satellite or the earthstations are destroyed. That's one of the beauties of satellite-based communications.

Sinixstar
06-10-2010, 1:17 AM
you might as well mosey on over to handguns and ask "which is better- glock 19 or 1911?"

Pyrodyne
06-10-2010, 7:31 AM
Kenwood TS-440SAT, with built-in tuner.

http://www.myhamshack.com/thumbnail.aspx?PicID=4140&MaxWidth=500

iPhones aren't so smart IMHO. A cheaper samsung touchscreen phone can be loaded with google maps with GPS, has a browser that works with calguns just peachy, has a decent enough organizer that makes it easy to set alarms, and very excellent battery life.

With all of that said, if you really want a battery burner, go with an Android. They are much more flexible and they support freedom to modify to your heart's desire without burning holes in your wallet.

Grumpyoldretiredcop
06-10-2010, 8:34 AM
None. The cell system will be the first thing to go. Pick one that you can use as an impact weapon. :D

CSACANNONEER
06-10-2010, 8:43 AM
Was this a serious question? If so, I guess that today's techies are completely out of touch with reality.

mif_slim
06-10-2010, 9:39 AM
When S hits the Fan, your mobile will be a useless item. Go with 2-way radio and stay within 1 mile of each other. haha....Im sure you'll pick up other folks too but at least you can still communicate. I remember during a new years my phone was down! "Call back, all lines are busy", Just image during a SHTF situation..

Other then that, I have a iPhone, it does almost everything I like it to do, only thing is it doesnt have flash/adobe products, which is one of the most important thing I need for my business application.

bombadillo
06-10-2010, 9:53 AM
SHTF, your phone is going to be useless. Go back to the basics..... Communications, utilities, public safety infrastructure is going to be down and overwhelmed faster than you think. And depends on the nature and widespread of the S, you probably should think about how you and your family going to survive thru the initial phrase of the recovery, 24hrs, 72hrs, a wk or a month..... or more....

This.... Buy extra batteries, generator for power on your basic needs if its a possibility, but 2 way radio communications and CB as well as HAM radio will rule the air waves. You're not going to be worried about calling granny half way across the country at that point if its really hitting the proverbial fan.

TurboChrisB
06-10-2010, 9:54 AM
All depends on how extreme of a SHTF situation.....Katrina, where the cell lines were all jacked up..........and landlines were completely down.....but you could sometimes get through on cell eventually and I've read several accounts that texting was mostly unaffected..being that I live in a crowded suburban area....I am not even trying to prep for a nuclear / EMP senario....but I AM prepped for a earthquake / civil unrest type situation and that includes a cellphone and back up battery and crank usb charger for my iphone.

ar15barrels
06-10-2010, 10:31 AM
I'm clueless when it comes to smartphones. I was wondering what the consensus is on the best smartphone on the market.

Get one of these:

http://www.icomamerica.com/en/products/703/ProductHeader.jpg

Wrap it in lead, bury it 50ft below the ground so it possibly survives the EMP pulse.
It should work fine after you and everyone else digs them all up and starts turning them on.

Juice5610
06-10-2010, 10:33 AM
Monday new thread on calguns = SHTF
Tuesday new thread on calguns = SHTF
Wednsday new thread on calguns = SHTF
Thursday new thread on calguns = SHTF
Friday new thread on calguns = SHTF
Saturday new thread on calguns = SHTF
Sunday new thread on calguns = SHTF

Are you guys like 15 year olds facinated with the aspect of walking around town fully geared up killing people? lol If you wanna walk around all decked out in gear so bad Join the military and actually be productive about it and PLEASE take it easy with all the SHTF/TEOTWAWKI crap its getting really old. Thank you.


ps flame on.

manuelcardenas77
06-10-2010, 11:06 AM
Monday new thread on calguns = SHTF
Tuesday new thread on calguns = SHTF
Wednsday new thread on calguns = SHTF
Thursday new thread on calguns = SHTF
Friday new thread on calguns = SHTF
Saturday new thread on calguns = SHTF
Sunday new thread on calguns = SHTF

Are you guys like 15 year olds facinated with the aspect of walking around town fully geared up killing people? lol If you wanna walk around all decked out in gear so bad Join the military and actually be productive about it and PLEASE take it easy with all the SHTF/TEOTWAWKI crap its getting really old. Thank you.


ps flame on. Well said Brutha!!!:cheers2::clap::clap:

RookieShooter
06-10-2010, 11:19 AM
Smoke signal, pigeons and pony express.

mif_slim
06-10-2010, 11:21 AM
Monday new thread on calguns = SHTF
Tuesday new thread on calguns = SHTF
Wednsday new thread on calguns = SHTF
Thursday new thread on calguns = SHTF
Friday new thread on calguns = SHTF
Saturday new thread on calguns = SHTF
Sunday new thread on calguns = SHTF

Are you guys like 15 year olds facinated with the aspect of walking around town fully geared up killing people? lol If you wanna walk around all decked out in gear so bad Join the military and actually be productive about it and PLEASE take it easy with all the SHTF/TEOTWAWKI crap its getting really old. Thank you.


ps flame on.

I 16 THANK YOU VERY MUCH!

jk. lol

packnrat
06-10-2010, 12:44 PM
heck one can build a world band radio for almost nothing and it fits in a cough-drop tin. just the key, battery (9volt) ear buds and wire antenna will not fit. no electronics to get fried by a emp.

lorax3
06-10-2010, 12:46 PM
Tin can phone

http://www.laorosa.com/images/tin_can_phone.jpg

JDay
06-10-2010, 1:52 PM
When SHTF you likely will not have working cellular service so this thread is moot, what you really want is a good ham radio.

JDay
06-10-2010, 1:54 PM
personally, when my contract is up I'm gonna bite the bullet and have 2 phones, an iPhone 4, and I'm gonna fork out $$ for the droid incredible. I'll see which one I like the best and cancel the other one while keeping the phone. Seems foolish, and wayyy expensive, but I'll have my definitive answer and that in it of itself is worth it for me.

By then the multi-core smartphones will probably be out.

Juice5610
06-10-2010, 1:56 PM
I work in the telecom business and the only use that will come out of the cellular service towers will be the 5-25,000 gallons of diesel fuel in the back up generetors. Good luck getting in without a tracksys key

JDay
06-10-2010, 1:57 PM
Satellite phone will probably still work even if the regular carriers are down. i don't foresee a total breakdown of communications. With all the options we have in the country something somewhere will work weather its a cell, sat, HAM or POTS line. Unless a EMP goes and hits the whole country at once.

If the carriers are down how are you going to get a dial tone? Who are you going to call?

Remember that a satellite phone *will* work unless the satellite or the earthstations are destroyed. That's one of the beauties of satellite-based communications.

They will not work if the phone lines are down, not to mention if the power goes out.

JDay
06-10-2010, 2:05 PM
Get one of these:

http://www.icomamerica.com/en/products/703/ProductHeader.jpg

Wrap it in lead, bury it 50ft below the ground so it possibly survives the EMP pulse.
It should work fine after you and everyone else digs them all up and starts turning them on.

Lead is not going to shield an EMP and neither will burying it, however water will get into and destroy the electronics if you bury it.

8200rpm
06-10-2010, 2:22 PM
SHTF was a joke, folks. I just wanted this thread to have a distinct Calguns flavor. And, I'd cut off my own testicles before getting into HAM.

So, smartphone... iPhone or something else?

XYZ
06-10-2010, 2:31 PM
SHTF was a joke, folks. I just wanted this thread to have a distinct Calguns flavor. And, I'd cut off my own testicles before getting into HAM.

So, smartphone... iPhone or something else?


For what purpose? You're thread topic was for SHTF. What is you're goal and criteria and we may be able to provide a better response for your situation. And if S does HTF, ham radio will be the only way to go.

ar15barrels
06-10-2010, 3:33 PM
I work in the telecom business and the only use that will come out of the cellular service towers will be the 5-25,000 gallons of diesel fuel in the back up generetors. Good luck getting in without a tracksys key

http://www.falcok9academy.com/falcok9/Home/Detection/Explosives/main/0/imageBinary/800px-Eod2.jpg

Ricky-Ray
06-10-2010, 3:47 PM
http://www.falcok9academy.com/falcok9/Home/Detection/Explosives/main/0/imageBinary/800px-Eod2.jpg


hahahahaha.... I was thinking the exact same thing.

John Browning
06-10-2010, 4:18 PM
For SHTF? This:

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/0/0a/Tr%C3%A5dtelefon-illustration.png

JDay
06-10-2010, 4:35 PM
http://www.falcok9academy.com/falcok9/Home/Detection/Explosives/main/0/imageBinary/800px-Eod2.jpg

A plasma cutter wont attract unwanted guests.

gabe123
06-10-2010, 4:35 PM
1. Movie SHTF situation: forget it, smart and dumb phone alike.

2. Real life / likely SHTF: some cell towers and backbone cables would be down. But the government would most likely to repair them before landline. Don't count on any repair done within the first 48-72 hrs. Also, voice and text message would likely be avaiable way before internet and other fancy stuff.

So, you want something that can last. I would want a dumb phone, just voice and text that have hours of talk time, and a few days standing by. You can also have an extra smart phone. But smart phones burn thru battery like crazy, and really don't offer much. You sure you want an agenda/ organizer to memorize things when you have to worry about things like shelter/ water/ food ? you want something fancy and become a target yourself? You want something that take 3-4 hrs of charging time using solar power out in the open?

Ideal SHTF/backup phone for me would be a simple GSM phone running on AA battery. But I can't have that. So, a simple GSM phone with car charger and a car battery would last till government help arrive.

No government you say? then forget about phone. You can kiss your satelite phone goodbye too..... unless you use a chinese satelite ....

bigmike82
06-10-2010, 4:53 PM
"They will not work if the phone lines are down, not to mention if the power goes out. "
The satellite earth station is *not* where you are. That's why that phone WILL work.

You won't be able to make 'local' calls, but you will be able to reach other people on satellite phones, or call outside of the immediately affected area.

Sajedene
06-10-2010, 8:10 PM
Really now, guys. There are those who take something seriously, then there are THOSE who take it too seriously.

I know I posted for fun. Wish more did the same.

Breathe in... and out.

JDay
06-10-2010, 8:17 PM
"They will not work if the phone lines are down, not to mention if the power goes out. "
The satellite earth station is *not* where you are. That's why that phone WILL work.

You won't be able to make 'local' calls, but you will be able to reach other people on satellite phones, or call outside of the immediately affected area.

When SHTF a nuke may go off in the atmosphere over the US, the resulting EMP will take out the telephone networks and many satellites. Like I said, sat phones may not work. A much better solution would be to keep radio equipment and solar chargers in a faraday cage.

bigmike82
06-10-2010, 8:32 PM
Right, if WW3 happens, your sat phone may not work.

During a more likely scenario (earthquake, hurricane, riots, etc), a satellite connection (be it phone or data) will stay up. Ham radio is a great option, but so are Sat Phones.

bigmike82
06-10-2010, 8:34 PM
dupe

bombadillo
06-10-2010, 11:52 PM
Oh come on guys, a smart phone can hold This entire book:
http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51BhFQLbPEL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA300_SH20_OU01_.jpg

Or if it gets really bad this:

http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51xFw%2B-omeL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA300_SH20_OU01_.jpg

I'm not going to judge which, but I'll go for the wilderness survival guide and you guys can take whichever you prefer.

JDay
06-11-2010, 12:24 AM
Right, if WW3 happens, your sat phone may not work.

During a more likely scenario (earthquake, hurricane, riots, etc), a satellite connection (be it phone or data) will stay up. Ham radio is a great option, but so are Sat Phones.

A sat phone is still useless if you can't call anyone in the area.

Fantasma
06-11-2010, 1:02 AM
I am an android fan but in shtf for anything other than cell service which will probably be down anyway iphone

LMAO

:rofl2:

ar15barrels
06-11-2010, 8:13 AM
Oh come on guys, a smart phone can hold This entire book:
http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51BhFQLbPEL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA300_SH20_OU01_.jpg

The printed version is EMP proof. ;)

xrMike
06-11-2010, 8:33 AM
Like I said, sat phones may not work. A much better solution would be to keep radio equipment and solar chargers in a faraday cage.Any microwave oven should work as a faraday cage, correct? I might just go to the thrift store, buy an old beater microwave, throw it in the garage, and store my radio in there along with a couple other things.

Hope the wife never sees it and I have to explain WTF it's for... She will finally know for sure that I am truly nutz (rather than just suspect it).

bigmike82
06-11-2010, 8:43 AM
"A sat phone is still useless if you can't call anyone in the area."
Is it? You wouldn't want to call friends or relatives outside the area to let them know you're okay? You don't want to get news reports from them? Ask someone not affected by the disaster to pick you up somewhere on the edge?

There's plenty of uses for sat phones. Just because you can't call your neighbor Susie and ask her for a candle-lit dinner doesn't make them useless.

XYZ
06-11-2010, 9:33 AM
There's plenty of uses for sat phones. Just because you can't call your neighbor Susie and ask her for a candle-lit dinner doesn't make them useless.

How many people actually have satellite phones though and pay the monthly fee? Maybe that's a poll question but I bet there are more ham radio operators than there are satellite phone owners (excluding our troops in Iraq and Afghanistan).

TonyM
06-11-2010, 9:57 AM
How many people actually have satellite phones though and pay the monthly fee? Maybe that's a poll question but I bet there are more ham radio operators than there are satellite phone owners (excluding our troops in Iran and Afghanistan).


I have a Moto 9555. A friend has had an iridium phone for a few years, and now that I got mine two other people I know have purchased one and my parents are going to order one next week. That's a decent small network right there. ;)

Once you have one, or know someone that has one you see the advantages. $25 a month to keep it active to me is very reasonable for a situation like the 1989 L.P. earthquake, for example. Landlines were down and/or overloaded, and so was my cellphone service, and back then, cellphones were not extremely common.

Plus, a Sat phone sure is nice insurance if you go out shooting where there is no cell coverage... And, there's no operator's test or license needed like HAM.

XYZ
06-11-2010, 10:48 AM
TonyM - Can you provide a link to the service plans you have? I'd be interested in checking this out. I'm a ham but would certainly like to know more about satellite phones.

evidens83
06-11-2010, 10:48 AM
If there was truly a SHTF situation it wont be long before the networks stop working. HAM radio is your best bet.

tacticalcity
06-11-2010, 10:50 AM
Best option would be a battery powered (as in AA) Satalite phone. But those things are usually not price structured for individual use or ownsership. They a priced for a corporate body, and expensive as all heck unless you get them by the truck load. At least they were the last time I looked into them (which was about 5 years ago when a buddy was shipping out to Iraq and I was looking for a good gift for him). The phone itself is not the problem. It's the service. Pretty much have to sign over your first born. The again, maybe a company has finally started offering better pricing since then. If both supply and demand has increased, it would make sense for the price to drop. When I was looking there was a boom in demand, and very little supply. Another issue is, who exactly are you going to call? Unless they have a SAT phone, they won't be able to receive your call. But people have covered that already.

That said I keep AA powered emergency charges and AA batteries for my iPhone in my BOB, Glove Box, and Laptop Case. Odds are they will be useless in a true SHTF, but they come in handy during life's normal little emergencies.

If you were lucky enough to get your family and friends gathered in a group, the best thing you could have is a bunch of hand held radios. It is not hard to imagine the need to be able to keep in contact with say somebody 10-15 minutes away. In my SHTF surival plan, the goal is to get to my fathers vinyard. It's large, has plenty of shelter, plenty of water, tons of food on hand and the ability to grow more. If I am out in the vines, or somwhere out on the property and a threat or some other emergency (no matter how minor) comes along, I am going to need to be able to contact the others. So the hand held radios would be vital. So whether it's calling to report an intruder, or calling to ask for a hand moving a heavy box in the winery, those CB radios are great.

I think the problem is, people have some pretty weak definitions of SHTF. I've heard some guys describe a break-in as SHTF. Those guys crack me up. Major lack of imagination if that is the worst scenerio they can come up with. They must not have watched Red Dawn as a kid. ;)

bigmike82
06-11-2010, 11:02 AM
*cough* <shameless plug to follow>

My company is going to start providing the Inmarsat SPS phones as soon as they come out. Retail price for each phone is well under $1,000, with several service plans available. Annual service is in the 300 dollar range; 360 or so with 5 pre-paid minutes per month. PM Me if interested.
</shameless plug>

The pricing of most satellite services is still very much structured for government/corporate use, since satellites are very expensive. It's a great solution for providing communications when terrestrial ones are down or overloaded...but an expensive one.

tacticalcity
06-11-2010, 11:19 AM
The ones I saw when looking for one for my buddy were bulky as hell. So its not like you can justify it and say its replacing your existing cell phone.

You really have to have an everyday need that exceeds the capabilities of existing commercial phones to justify the expense, bulky size, and lack of fun features. If you are going to be spending the year in the SANDBOX it is a smart investment. But if you are just going to put it in your BOB, for an event that may not happen in your lifetime, and even then no one else you know or would want to call has one I am not sure it makes sense.

That said, if you do have a realistic need, you will be the most popular guy there. All your coworkers will be borrowing your SAT phone to call home. You can charge by the mininute.

By the time our kids are our age, they will probably be super tiny and super affordable and have a thousand times more features than our smart phones. Unless something better comes along.

Communications companies are paying China to put satalites into space for them, and they launch those missles like clockwork now. It was a launch per month a few years ago. For all I know it could be a launch per week or more by now.

XYZ
06-11-2010, 11:21 AM
Just spent some time looking at the Moto 9555 and other satellite plans. I think the price points are out of reach for most people. As others have recently stated, these prices are more for government and business rather than consumer use. Even if one were to receive a discount on a phone - final cost of maybe $1,000 - the monthly plans are more than what most people are willing to pay for peace of mind as a backup that may never get used.

A dualband HT would be less than $200 with no monthly fees and the FCC dumbed down the requirements in 2007 for a ham license.

All that being said - PM being sent to bigmike82 to see how I can buy a satellite phone :).

bigmike82
06-11-2010, 11:33 AM
"The ones I saw when looking for one for my buddy were bulky as hell..."
Inmarsat is releasing one in a few days that's quite sexy. I haven't gotten my hands on a demo model yet, but all the pictures that I've seen are very nice.

TonyM
06-11-2010, 11:43 AM
Just spent some time looking at the Moto 9555 and other satellite plans. I think the price points are out of reach for most people. As others have recently stated, these prices are more for government and business rather than consumer use. Even if one were to receive a discount on a phone - final cost of maybe $1,000 - the monthly plans are more than what most people are willing to pay for peace of mind as a backup that may never get used.

A dualband HT would be less than $200 with no monthly fees and the FCC dumbed down the requirements in 2007 for a ham license.

All that being said - PM being sent to bigmike82 to see how I can buy a satellite phone :).

Here's a pic I took of my 9555:

http://bleedingbrain.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/04/9555.jpg

It's a little smaller than most other iridium devices and connects to the satellites faster, so it is more expensive. I paid $1295 for the device. Rates are $25 a month for 0 minutes, just keeping the acct alive, and $1.80 a minute for airtime. That's much cheaper than my first cellphone when I was paying $3.50 a minute to GTE MobilNet. ;)

When buying satellite service, you need to look around. The resellers set the pricing, since they are buying minutes in bulk and distributing them across their plans for the users. I saw plans that were $50 a month with no minutes, $35 with 10 minutes a month, etc...

I don't plan to use it often enough to get a plan with minutes, and if you go with the pre-paid sim card route, the minutes will expire unless you keep topping up the sim. I don't like the maintenance schedule like that.

I ended up with http://www.deltawavecomm.com/

For me, it's not only as a SHTF device, but a hiking/hunting/camping/shooting aid. If something happens where there is no cell signal (seems to happen frequently for me) I can still call 911 on the sat phone and get assistance. I just keep it charged and with me.

I don't pretend that it's cheap or anything, but like I said, to me it is worth it. I'll use it more often than I will many of the handguns sitting in my safes. I had the cellphone I mentioned above that was $60 a month with 0 minutes and $3.50 a minute on weekdays and $1.80 on weekends, so maybe I got desensitized back in the 80s with average $400 phone bills. :)

xrMike
06-11-2010, 11:44 AM
http://www.falcok9academy.com/falcok9/Home/Detection/Explosives/main/0/imageBinary/800px-Eod2.jpgYou have sexy nails, Randall.

tacticalcity
06-11-2010, 2:42 PM
Here's a pic I took of my 9555:

http://bleedingbrain.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/04/9555.jpg

It's a little smaller than most other iridium devices and connects to the satellites faster, so it is more expensive. I paid $1295 for the device. Rates are $25 a month for 0 minutes, just keeping the acct alive, and $1.80 a minute for airtime. That's much cheaper than my first cellphone when I was paying $3.50 a minute to GTE MobilNet. ;)

When buying satellite service, you need to look around. The resellers set the pricing, since they are buying minutes in bulk and distributing them across their plans for the users. I saw plans that were $50 a month with no minutes, $35 with 10 minutes a month, etc...

I don't plan to use it often enough to get a plan with minutes, and if you go with the pre-paid sim card route, the minutes will expire unless you keep topping up the sim. I don't like the maintenance schedule like that.

I ended up with http://www.deltawavecomm.com/

For me, it's not only as a SHTF device, but a hiking/hunting/camping/shooting aid. If something happens where there is no cell signal (seems to happen frequently for me) I can still call 911 on the sat phone and get assistance. I just keep it charged and with me.

I don't pretend that it's cheap or anything, but like I said, to me it is worth it. I'll use it more often than I will many of the handguns sitting in my safes. I had the cellphone I mentioned above that was $60 a month with 0 minutes and $3.50 a minute on weekdays and $1.80 on weekends, so maybe I got desensitized back in the 80s with average $400 phone bills. :)

Wouldn't a CB radio be just as effective in the majority of those situations? I'm not sure where exactly you are going but here in CA most places here within reach of a ranger station or police station with somebody monitoring the emergency channel. Right? Not saying a Satalite phone isn't a safer bet, but it sure is expensive.

In somewhere truly remote the Satalite phone makes more sense. I just haven't been anywhere like that since I got out of the military. And back then we didn't have these things. If we ran into trouble we would have had to relay a message thru friendly aircraft close enough to receive us to the nearest airbase with a hardline and/or the ability to render aid. Oh how times have changed.

XYZ
06-11-2010, 2:52 PM
Wouldn't a CB radio be just as effective in the majority of those situations? I'm not sure where exactly you are going but here in CA most places here in CA are within reach of a ranger station or police station with somebody monitoring the emergency channel. Right?

In somewhere truly remote the Satalite phone makes more sense. I just haven't been anywhere like that since I got out of the military. And back then we didn't have these things. If we ran into trouble we would have had to relay a message thru friendly aircraft close enough to receive us to the nearest airbase with a hardline. Oh how times have changed.

CB like FRS/GMRS (GMRS requires a no test license good for 5 years) only work well in line of site operation. In an urban area or a forest with a lot of obstruction that could mean only a coverage of 2 miles at best in optimal conditions. A flat desert setting between the two antennas would probably give you 25+ miles so ham radio or a satellite phone would be better.

Thanks for the input about the satellite phones TonyM and BigMike. I'll definitely need to check into this as some of my friends and family members aren't interested in earning their ham license.

JDay
06-11-2010, 3:16 PM
Any microwave oven should work as a faraday cage, correct? I might just go to the thrift store, buy an old beater microwave, throw it in the garage, and store my radio in there along with a couple other things.

Hope the wife never sees it and I have to explain WTF it's for... She will finally know for sure that I am truly nutz (rather than just suspect it).

Yes, however they're only made to block the frequency range that the microwave uses. Some of the rf still makes it out too, that's why microwaves can interfere with 2.4ghz devices such as cordless phones and wifi. I'd just buy one of these.

http://www.lbagroup.com/technology/faraday-cages.php?gclid=CM3fr-aHmaICFRBLgwod8k2eVw

http://www.lbagroup.com/images/faraday_cage_fiber_optic.jpg

JDay
06-11-2010, 3:21 PM
"A sat phone is still useless if you can't call anyone in the area."
Is it? You wouldn't want to call friends or relatives outside the area to let them know you're okay? You don't want to get news reports from them? Ask someone not affected by the disaster to pick you up somewhere on the edge?

There's plenty of uses for sat phones. Just because you can't call your neighbor Susie and ask her for a candle-lit dinner doesn't make them useless.

A HAM radio is far superior, you can use them to get a message out to friends/family, to make a phone call over a phone patch, to get news and to directly talk with emergency crews if you need help. Clouds can also block your sat phone from getting a signal. Being inside a building and being under trees does the same thing.

JDay
06-11-2010, 3:23 PM
$25 a month to keep it active to me is very reasonable for a situation like the 1989 L.P. earthquake, for example.

$0/month to keep a HAM radio active (keep a solar charger on hand to charge batteries) and you don't have to worry about a solar storm taking out the sats.

Plus, a Sat phone sure is nice insurance if you go out shooting where there is no cell coverage... And, there's no operator's test or license needed like HAM.

If you cant pass that test you shouldn't even be using a computer, and you don't need a license to use one in an emergency.

JDay
06-11-2010, 3:30 PM
Wouldn't a CB radio be just as effective in the majority of those situations?

You want a HAM radio not CB. CB has a much more limited range and not nearly as many frequency options. You can talk to the world if you have the correct HAM equipment.

bigmike82
06-11-2010, 3:31 PM
"Clouds can also block your sat phone from getting a signal. Being inside a building and being under trees does the same thing."

Clouds will do no such thing in any phone made in the last five, ten years.

Yes, being inside a building will degrade your satellite phone performance; it will also degrade your hand-held ham radio performance.

Under good conditions, your little hand-held is going to have a range of what...3, 4 miles? Your SatPhone has a range of 44,000 miles.

Ham radio is an outstanding option during an emergency. Everyone should have at least a handheld and the license to use it (though, once again, you don't need a license to transmit during an emergency).

But for pure range and ease of communication, you can not beat a satellite phone. Hell, if you want internet access during this emergency, buy a BGAN unit and blog away during Apocalypse. Point is, this technology allows you the full range of communication that you're used to even when everything else near you is down.

XYZ
06-11-2010, 3:37 PM
If you upgrade to general class license and/or have the correct equipment, as JDAY mentioned with a ham radio you can talk to anyone in the world - no repeaters necessary and no limitations. Even communicate with the ISS. Plus you can use it as a scanner and listen in on emergency communications, etc. Lot's of great pluses. I see your point about satellite phones though for the average person.

One has to weigh the option of price point for a satellite phone versus a license for a ham. It's up to each person to decide what's best for them.

JDay
06-11-2010, 3:40 PM
"Clouds can also block your sat phone from getting a signal. Being inside a building and being under trees does the same thing."

Clouds will do no such thing in any phone made in the last five, ten years.

Yes, being inside a building will degrade your satellite phone performance; it will also degrade your hand-held ham radio performance.

Under good conditions, your little hand-held is going to have a range of what...3, 4 miles? Your SatPhone has a range of 44,000 miles.

Much more than that, I've gotten 50+ miles indoors on an HT (GMRS radios are lucky to get 2-3 miles). For SHTF situations though you'll want a mobile rig and an HT. There are several mobile rigs out there that come with battery packs, and you can run them off any car battery. You can also use them as a repeater to extend your range, useful when you're out in the woods.

Ham radio is an outstanding option during an emergency. Everyone should have at least a handheld and the license to use it (though, once again, you don't need a license to transmit during an emergency).

But for pure range and ease of communication, you can not beat a satellite phone.

Ever hear of repeater nets? Assigned emergency frequencies?

Hell, if you want internet access during this emergency, buy a BGAN unit and blog away during Apocalypse. Point is, this technology allows you the full range of communication that you're used to even when everything else near you is down.

You can get internet access with a HAM radio and a BNC.

JDay
06-11-2010, 3:42 PM
If you upgrade to general class license and/or have the correct equipment, as JDAY mentioned with a ham radio you can talk to anyone in the world - no repeaters necessary and no limitations. Even communicate with the ISS.

You can talk to the ISS with a HT, people do it all the time. I've even read about people bouncing the signal from their HT off the moon and making contacts in other parts of the world.

bigmike82
06-11-2010, 3:45 PM
None of what you're saying in any way affects what I said.

I don't dispute that amateur radio is a great tool to have during an emergency.

But satellite gives you a far greater range with a much better user interface for the average person. It's that simple.

XYZ
06-11-2010, 3:57 PM
As an FYI, the range of a ham radio pretty much covers the world.

For the average person I think the user interface of a satellite phone has the greater advantage over a ham.

JDay
06-11-2010, 4:25 PM
But satellite gives you a far greater range with a much better user interface for the average person. It's that simple.

See below. And like I said earlier solar storms could takeout the satellites along with ground stations and the power grid. Its being predicted by NASA that this event may happen before long. HAM radio will still be working after such an event.

As an FYI, the range of a ham radio pretty much covers the world.


http://www.ksee24.com/news/local/96087524.html

By KSEE News

Story Published: Jun 10, 2010 at 4:43 PM EDT

Story Updated: Jun 10, 2010 at 7:13 PM EDT

Scientists tell us the Sun goes through heightened solar flare activity about every 11 years, and we're due for some activity around 2013. Lately, the Sun has been quiet. So should we be worried? Well, maybe.

NASA’s astronomers say that while many of the Earth’s satellites might be in trouble, we probably aren’t. The Earth's magnetosphere generally deflects these huge bursts of energy and keeps us from cooking like something in your microwave oven.

Now, back to those satellites. Scientists say there have been big sun storms before, but we've never been this dependent on the technology they can disrupt. GPS, Internet, cell phones could be affected, as well as ATM and credit card transactions.

On the extreme end of the spectrum, if a solar flare has enough electromagnetic force, it could cause blackouts here on the ground. That's because long runs of conductive materials like copper cabling can heat up (and even melt) from the sun's increased radiation.

For a look at NASA's Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO), which tracks this sort of thing,

Good luck using your sat phone as anything other than a paper weight when this happens (and it will, just a matter of time).

TonyM
06-11-2010, 5:01 PM
Uh Oh everyone. Seems this is JDay's new target, he must be bored with Apple... :rolleyes:

As I said before, it works for me and I can afford it. I'm not running off to be in a HAM club, or worry about the tests. I'm invested in too many hobbies to get into HAM. Everyone I've known to get into HAM gets over-invested and usually is the type that ends up needing more sun.

Don't be such a hater, everything seems to be crap if you don't like it. I've personally refrained from commenting on your opinions in this forum that are completely wrong about the (unrelated to this topic) field I work in. You seem like a bright guy, but you don't know everything and Google can fail you.

TonyM
06-11-2010, 5:02 PM
None of what you're saying in any way affects what I said.

I don't dispute that amateur radio is a great tool to have during an emergency.

But satellite gives you a far greater range with a much better user interface for the average person. It's that simple.

Exactly.

ar15barrels
06-11-2010, 5:24 PM
Uh Oh everyone. Seems this is JDay's new target, he must be bored with Apple... :rolleyes:

:rofl2:

bigmike82
06-11-2010, 5:43 PM
"Good luck using your sat phone as anything other than a paper weight when this happens (and it will, just a matter of time)."

:TFH:

I would read the report before you start quoting alarmist news articles. ;)

Actually, I partly take that back. The reporter didn't cite his source, so I can't really say go and read the article. IF it is the report that I suspect it is (Severe Space Weather Events--Understanding Societal and Economic Impacts: A Workshop Report), it's not nearly as bad as you think.

To expand further. Solar flares, radiation and the like are not new issues in spacecraft design. In fact, they are the *key* environmental component that the spacecraft is designed around...more so, even, than the vacuum itself (for non-habitable spacecraft). For quite some time, the radiation belts around the earth were misunderstood as far worse than they actually are, and satellites were thereby OVER-designed. Add to that the usual safety factor, and you've got some pretty damn resilient pieces of communications floating around up there. A loss of a satellite can be a billion-dollar cost...so if the owning company needs to put in an additional million or two to shield the satellite from solar flares, you bet they'll do it.

Point is...the sky is not falling, either now or in 2012.

apatomae
06-11-2010, 6:24 PM
Who the hell will I need to call when SHTF? God? Pizza Hutt?

ar15barrels
06-11-2010, 6:30 PM
Who the hell will I need to call when SHTF?

http://purplejesus.files.wordpress.com/2009/07/dosequisman.jpg

lorax3
06-11-2010, 6:32 PM
Who the hell will I need to call when SHTF?

Who you gonna call?

http://www.thealmightyguru.com/Reviews/Ghostbusters/Images/SoundTrack-Ghostbusters.jpg

JDay
06-11-2010, 7:37 PM
"Good luck using your sat phone as anything other than a paper weight when this happens (and it will, just a matter of time)."

:TFH:

I would read the report before you start quoting alarmist news articles. ;)

Actually, I partly take that back. The reporter didn't cite his source, so I can't really say go and read the article. IF it is the report that I suspect it is (Severe Space Weather Events--Understanding Societal and Economic Impacts: A Workshop Report), it's not nearly as bad as you think.

You act like it hasn't happened before and wont happen again.

http://articles.latimes.com/1989-03-07/news/mn-174_1_solar-flare

Powerful Solar Flare Disrupts Navigation, Shortwave Radio
March 07, 1989|From United Press International

BOULDER, Colo. — The strongest solar flare in five years erupted on the face of the sun Monday, disrupting communications on Earth. It was expected to set off a brilliant show of northern lights early Wednesday.

The flare affected Coast Guard navigation systems and shortwave radio signals and was expected to affect surface and satellite communications through Wednesday, said Joe Kunches of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Space Environment Services Center.

The flare, detected at 6:05 a.m. PST, was so strong that it overwhelmed instrumentation on an NOAA satellite that measures the strength of flares, Kunches said, making it the strongest solar flare since April, 1984.

Protons from the flare were expected to reach the Earth's atmosphere late Monday and disrupt computers on many orbiting satellites, he said.

Kunches said the display of northern lights, also called the aurora borealis, should be evident early Wednesday in the northern third of the United States.

Scientists expect more flares during the next 12 days.

http://www.canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/2977

Massive Solar Flare Possible Again
By Joshua Hill Thursday, May 8, 2008

December 2005 saw a small solar storm disrupt satellite to ground communications and GPS navigation signals for 10 minutes. However just under a hundred and fifty years earlier, a much larger solar flare caused much greater influences than a small communications black out.

However, Louis J. Lanzerotti, retired Distinguished Member of Technical Staff at Bell Laboratories and current editor of the journal Space Weather, puts everything in to perspective: “I would not have wanted to be on a commercial airplane being guided in for a landing by GPS or on a ship being docked by GPS during that 10 minutes.”

So what would happen if a solar flare like the one that took place at 11:18 AM on the cloudless morning of Thursday, September 1, 1859 happened again?

Thirty-three-year-old Richard Carrington was the first man to witness a solar flare, or at least, he was the first scientist to have a vague understanding of what he was seeing. A preeminent astronomer of his day, Carrington was drawing sunspots using his telescope when he saw two brilliant beads of blinding white light appear over his sunspots.

Realizing that he was witnessing something unprecedented and “being somewhat flurried by the surprise,” Carrington later wrote, “I hastily ran to call someone to witness the exhibition with me. On returning within 60 seconds, I was mortified to find that it was already much changed and enfeebled.”

Just before dawn the next day however, the energy created by the solar flare, known as a coronal mass ejection (CME), struck Earth’s magnetic field, causing the global bubble of magnetism that wraps our planet safely from cosmic rays. The geomagnetic storm that followed sent enormous electric currents surging through telegraph lines, and created auroras so brilliant that the dawn sky turned to midday. So massive was this ejection that auroras were seen all the way over Cuba, the Bahamas, Jamaica, El Salvador, and Hawaii.

“What Carrington saw was a white-light solar flare—a magnetic explosion on the sun,” explains David Hathaway, solar physics team lead at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama. “It’s rare that one can actually see the brightening of the solar surface. It takes a lot of energy to heat up the surface of the sun!”

Is another flare like the Carrington one likely to occur in our lifetime? Probably not, seems to be the consensus, as a Carrington-flare is evidenced to be a once every 500-year event. However, Hathaway cautions that we simply don’t know enough to rule out a repeat in our own lifetime.

The damage that could be done should a Carrington-flare occur anytime soon would be catastrophic, with estimates reaching between $30 and $70 billion. With technology so ingrained in our everyday lives, how much more will life be affected than back in a day where the telegraph was the most sophisticated form of communication?

http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2008/06may_carringtonflare/

http://archives.cnn.com/2001/TECH/space/04/04/solar.storm/index.html

Solar flare biggest ever recorded

Earth dodges solar bullet, for now

April 4, 2001
Web posted at: 5:49 p.m. EDT (2149 GMT)

(CNN) -- Before fading beyond the far side of the sun, one of the most turbulent sunspots in a decade spawned the biggest solar flare on record, scientists said.

Meanwhile, another large area of disturbance has emerged, one that could push more powerful solar salvos toward Earth.

On Monday, a sunspot called active region 9393 by scientists unleashed a major solar flare at 5:51 p.m. EDT. The flare is the biggest on record, according to researchers with the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory, one of a fleet of spacecraft monitoring solar activity and its effects on the Earth.

The blast was even larger than a 1989 solar flare that led to the collapse of a major power grid in Canada. Radiation from the new flare was so intense it saturated the X-ray detectors on two spacecraft used by the U.S. government to determine the strength of the solar blasts.

Monday's flare also was the most powerful recorded since regular X-ray data became available in 1976. But it did not head directly toward Earth, sparing sensitive electrical and communications systems, space scientists said.

Sunspot 9393 should drift out of view within a day as the sun rotates. But active region 9415, another large sunspot emerging on the visible side of the sun, could hurl destructive solar storms our way. The new spot already produced a powerful type of solar burst on Monday.

The sun, at the peak of an 11-year cycle of activity, has become increasingly active in recent weeks. At such times the star is often rife with sunspots, relatively cool and dark regions on the surface caused by a concentration of temporarily distorted magnetic fields.

Sunspots spawn tremendous eruptions into the atmosphere, known as coronal mass ejections (CMEs), which hurl billions of tons of electrified gas and radiation into space.

Directed toward Earth, such storms can disrupt satellite communications and power grids and produce dramatic aurora displays in the northern and southern latitudes.

Several such outbursts over the past week prompted some of the best aurora displays in years, dazzling nighttime sky watchers as far south as Mexico.

A pair of CMEs that erupted earlier this week reached Earth on Wednesday. But the blow was glancing and hardly stirred up the magnetosphere, said SOHO project scientist Paal Brekke.

Sky watchers should be alert for auroras after nightfall. Almost certainly, the geomagnetic storm will be less intense than the one last weekend, scientists said.

There are many more similar reports out there.

command_liner
06-11-2010, 7:57 PM
Ham is good, but you have to practice it or know some theory for it to be
useful.

With ham, the ability to communicate rises as the factorial of the number of
nodes. For telephone service, capacity is limited to the smallest-capacity
link between the handset and any other handset in the world.

Sat phones are good, but capacity is quite limited compared to land lines and
ham.

3-watt simplex FM ham will go 100 miles if you have good equipment and
good geography. I do it a _lot_.

In a true SHTF situation, use your ham radio to talk directly to the cockpit
radio in those planes flying above. Switch to AM, tune in your local tower
frequency, identify the nature of the emergency, and talk. They will be
listening.

bigmike82
06-11-2010, 8:18 PM
Holy crap! A ten minute outage??? Whatever will we do?

"The damage that could be done should a Carrington-flare occur anytime soon would be catastrophic, with estimates reaching between $30 and $70 billion. With technology so ingrained in our everyday lives, how much more will life be affected than back in a day where the telegraph was the most sophisticated form of communication? "
Is there an actual technical source for this, or this pure FUD?

You are giving me *many* examples of temporary outages due to solar activity. What you have no presented is WIDE-SPREAD damage to the satellites. You'll find incidents of one or two breaking down there and there, but a massive destruction of the orbiting satellites IS NOT GOING TO HAPPEN. It HASN'T happened. Nor will it. The solar activity is going to interfere with transmissions *during* the event. Not before. Not after.

I can play this "what if" game too.

What would happen if the sun suddently went nova? OH CRAP! THE END IS NEAR! We're screwed. Sell all your posessions 'cus they won't do you any good during the solar blast.

All you're posting, JDay, is articles which *SPECULATE* on the effects of a worst-case scenario solar flare on poorly manufactured satellites. And that's all it is. You will not find any evidence of systemic vulnerabilities to the satellite infrastructure caused by solar activity.

locosway
06-11-2010, 9:07 PM
This will be a iPhone vs. Android thread :laugh:

iPhone is like a Mac. It does what it's supposed to do, and you can't really dig into the guts to make it faster or screw it up.

Android OS phones are like a PC Linux. It does what it's supposed to do, and you can really dig into the guts to make it faster, or screw it up.

Fixed.

mswanson223
06-11-2010, 9:59 PM
I think I will stick to the CB radio

JDay
06-12-2010, 3:50 AM
Holy crap! A ten minute outage??? Whatever will we do?

That was caused by a small flare that wasn't pointed directly at us. Imagine a larger one that was.

You are giving me *many* examples of temporary outages due to solar activity. What you have no presented is WIDE-SPREAD damage to the satellites. You'll find incidents of one or two breaking down there and there, but a massive destruction of the orbiting satellites IS NOT GOING TO HAPPEN. It HASN'T happened. Nor will it. The solar activity is going to interfere with transmissions *during* the event. Not before. Not after.

Look again, this was wide spread disruption that lasted for several days.

All you're posting, JDay, is articles which *SPECULATE* on the effects of a worst-case scenario solar flare on poorly manufactured satellites. And that's all it is. You will not find any evidence of systemic vulnerabilities to the satellite infrastructure caused by solar activity.

Not speculation, historical fact. Look at them again and you'll see that one of those flares even knocked out a power grid.

bigmike82
06-12-2010, 10:27 AM
"Imagine a larger one that was."
There have been many large solar flares over the last two decades. Very, very few have succeeded in completely knocking out comsats. Your biggest group of victims are your scientific satellites, as organizations who sponsor them generally don't have the resources of the big guys.

"Look again, this was wide spread disruption that lasted for several days."
Again, on a scientific satellite designed to measure the strength of a solar flare.

The 89 event, which was substantially larger, also only lasted two days, interfered with GPS and did not damange any comsats. I've been unable to find any reference to any that were damaged. The GPS outage was caused by a degradation of the signal through the atmosphere. Those signals are already very very weak and received by tiny antennas. It takes much less to interfere with those signals than that of a standard satellite communications link. GPS is not equivalent to regular satellite communications signals.

"Not speculation, historical fact."
Wrong. It is speculation. There is no historical evidence that suggests that comsats are vulnerable to a large solar event. You do not have any cases where a large number of those satellites were damaged by a solar event in the past two decades. You simply don't. Saying that some hypothetically large solar storm is going to destroy our space communications infrastructure is pure, unadulterated FUD.

On a seperate note, terrestrial power grids != satellites. Power grids have a wider 'receive' area than a satellite, and because of their very design, are more susceptible. The article I mentioned earlier has some great info on this specific issue. Here's a spoiler: We, in SoCal, aren't vulnerable. (See page 79).

CnCFunFactory
06-12-2010, 7:15 PM
This will be a iPhone vs. Android thread :laugh:

iPhone is like a Mac. It does what it's supposed to do, and you can't really dig into the guts to make it faster or screw it up.

Android OS phones are like a PC. It does what it's supposed to do, and you can really dig into the guts to make it faster, or screw it up.

Yes it will and with that said.... Iphone!:D

xrMike
06-12-2010, 10:15 PM
Pardon if this is a stupid question, as I'm 3 beers down on a Saturday night, but with a SAT phone, you need some kind of provider, right? Specifically, you need to PAY some company so much money per month (or year) to access the satellites, right?

Well, in true SHTF, who is to say that THEIR infrastructure won't go down, and you therefore lose connectivity to the satellite(s)?

I mean, if you have to pay them monthly or yearly to maintain your comms, it stands to reason that they are a weak link, and if they go down, your SAT phone goes down too.

JDay
06-12-2010, 11:58 PM
Pardon if this is a stupid question, as I'm 3 beers down on a Saturday night, but with a SAT phone, you need some kind of provider, right? Specifically, you need to PAY some company so much money per month (or year) to access the satellites, right?

Well, in true SHTF, who is to say that THEIR infrastructure won't go down, and you therefore lose connectivity to the satellite(s)?

I mean, if you have to pay them monthly or yearly to maintain your comms, it stands to reason that they are a weak link, and if they go down, your SAT phone goes down too.

I wouldn't rely on a sat phone for communication when SHTF, here's a good reason that I saw on another board.

http://www.whenshtf.com/showthread.php?9483-CB-radio&p=113138#post113138

Bro- in law works for a major tel-co company, during hurricane Katrina, they where using sat phone to talk with their bases and where over powered or just downright kicked anytime FEMA or the national guard needed the line.

Satellites have limited bandwidth (that's why its so expensive to use) and it is prioritized, priority being given to the government/military.

bigmike82
06-13-2010, 9:22 AM
"here's a good reason that I saw on another board."

To counter that...

http://www.globalcomsatphone.com/globalcom/katrina.html

xrMike, here's how a satellite phone works.

You need to purchase a phone on a certain network. Satellites phones are generally not interchangeable between providers, as they're set for different frequencies, different modulations, different satellites and different encoding schemes. So when you buy a phone, you're also buying into the network provider (kind of like a cell phone, but even more restricted).

Once you have that phone, you have to prepay for minutes, or pay a monthly service charge if you're on a post-pay plan. The problem with prepay minutes is that, for Iridium specifically, those minutes expire within a certain amount of time. So if you prepay for 20 minutes, that would expire in a month. If you buy 200, those'll expire in six months, and so forth. The more you buy, the longer they stay active. It's a method that Iridium uses to ensure they keep some sort of steady revenue stream.

"Well, in true SHTF, who is to say that THEIR infrastructure won't go down"
Let me use Inmarsat as an example, because I'm more familiar with their products. Say you have a disaster of epic proportions here in Southern California. Giant 8.0 earthquake, a mega tsunamic and rioting out the wazo.

Say it affects *all* of Southern California, from Baker to San Diego to Santa Barbara. No power, no phones, no public services...all gone.

The reason satellite continues to work in these circumstances is that the key components of that satellite link are very, very far away. The satellite itself is up in space...20,000 miles away, and completely unaffected by this disaster. The earth station that receives the signal from the satellite (and from your satellite phone) is also very, very far away. In the case of Inmarsat, the earthstation is in the Netherlands (or Hawaii, or Italy). All three locations would be completely unaffected by anything that happened to you in SoCal. This is the key reason why satellite communications are so invaluable in the response component of a disaster.

Sure, if World War 3 happens, there's a good chance that the satellites will go offline (though its by no means a certainty...between the Iridium satellites, or the MILSTAR constellation, what do you think a bigger target for the Ruskies would be?).

This is not to say that satellite communication is not without its weaknesses, nor is it the end-all be-all to disaster communications. But it is very, very good at providing you with communications in a situation where the local infrastructure is overloaded or destroyed.

xMAC1x
06-13-2010, 10:48 AM
iphone btw AT&T sucks

Californio
06-13-2010, 1:42 PM
In a true SHTF scenario I am going to be working real hard and the only communication I will need is LOCAL, people that can directly affect my condition. Who will have time to talk outside the area? Whowill have time. I may need to call my buddies to assist me in what ever, local Comms. Satellite TV is good, wide band receiver is good, but I doubt I will have time or the desire to talk to anyone outside of the zone until its stabilized. Way to much diarrhea of the mouth in modern society, talk less and do more. If I need for any reason to touch base outside the zone, I will go talk to the 80 year-old man with the HF rigs if his tower is still standing.

acheron800
06-14-2010, 12:19 AM
I dont know about the rest of you, but ill be on my race radio, VHF, weatherman ch.

See you richard craniums after SHTF...

Offroad reference specifically: weatherman. :p

Seriously though, all of us offroad guys use VHF, do many normal people use it?

I am a complete radio noob btw...

JDay
06-14-2010, 12:27 AM
I dont know about the rest of you, but ill be on my race radio, VHF, weatherman ch.

See you richard craniums after SHTF...

Offroad reference specifically: weatherman. :p

Seriously though, all of us offroad guys use VHF, do many normal people use it?

I am a complete radio noob btw...

Many people use VHF.

xrMike
06-14-2010, 9:53 AM
Thanks for the satellite phone primer, big Mike.

Loner
06-14-2010, 9:02 PM
You can get internet access with a HAM radio and a BNC.
Wait, what?

bigmike82
06-14-2010, 9:33 PM
"Wait, what?"
Yeah, it's kinda cool. You can use internet via ham radio if you've got the correct equipment on each end.

Just a huge caveat. Don't even think about doing anything work related using this method, as it is illegal. The ARRL book I read for my basic license emphasized this repeatedly. Anything even remotely resembling business can not be done over amateur frequencies.

KillZone45
06-14-2010, 9:55 PM
See you richard craniums after SHTF...

Offroad reference specifically: weatherman. :p



HAHA rad, a fellow deZert racing junkie here:D

sevensix2x51
06-14-2010, 10:07 PM
i cant believe i read all 3 pages...

you guys are dorks. when shtf, im going to be too concerned with finding rabbits and water than to fiddle with some radio crap.

OP- i understand the jest in your thread, so my opinion is to get anything but an apple. my nokia e71x is a great phone, but im always looking for something new, so i have my -free- hp ipaq glisten in the mail from at&t. i have to have a qwerty physical keyboard on a phone, as i want to text fast without errors, and hate predictive text. it pisses me off.cuz when the zombies and red chinese fascist commies are busting down the door, i gotta be able to text "hugs n kisses" to the old lady in nanoseconds. sorry for late reply. aint bin 'round for a bit.

Loner
06-14-2010, 10:08 PM
"Wait, what?"
Yeah, it's kinda cool. You can use internet via ham radio if you've got the correct equipment on each end.

Just a huge caveat. Don't even think about doing anything work related using this method, as it is illegal. The ARRL book I read for my basic license emphasized this repeatedly. Anything even remotely resembling business can not be done over amateur frequencies.
How does it exactly work? Would there be signal sound of some sort, like the old 56k days? And what about encryption?

XYZ
06-14-2010, 10:55 PM
i cant believe i read all 3 pages...

you guys are dorks. when shtf, im going to be too concerned with finding rabbits and water than to fiddle with some radio crap.


If you had an amateur radio you could be asking someone else if they have any rabbits or water or where they got theirs :).

bigmike82
06-14-2010, 11:58 PM
"How does it exactly work? Would there be signal sound of some sort, like the old 56k days? And what about encryption? "
Depends. There are various different modulation schemes that you can use. I don't know much of the technical details behind this within the Ham world, but it is as easy as grabbing two modems (one on either end) and connecting them via an open frequency. You plug in one modem to the network, and your computer into the other, and suddenly you've got access.

Google Packet Radio and AX.25, and go from there. If you don't have an amateur license, get one first and see what kind of local clubs you've got access to. Someone there is bound to have a working setup they may let you look at / play with.

The signal you send out can not be encrypted. I don't know the correct laws for it, but I do remember reading something to that effect in my study guide.

jarhead995
06-15-2010, 1:49 AM
Droid Incredible.

it really is Incredible I've used the Iphone, Moto Droid, and Droid and Droid Incredible

The Incredible is just so fast, light, and skinny, I wish I could have it.

sevensix2x51
06-15-2010, 7:34 PM
If you had an amateur radio you could be asking someone else if they have any rabbits or water or where they got theirs :).

felt compelled to poop in thi thread, it was getting waay too serious in here. :tt2:

JDay
06-15-2010, 10:06 PM
Wait, what?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Packet_radio

Amateur radio operators began experimenting with packet radio in 1978, when after obtaining authorization from the Canadian government, Robert Rouleau, VE2PY and The Western Quebec VHF/UHF Amateur Radio Club in Montreal, Canada began experimenting with transmitting ASCII encoded data over VHF amateur radio frequencies using homebuilt equipment.[2] In 1980, Doug Lockhart, VE7APU and the Vancouver Area Digital Communications Group (VADCG) in Vancouver, Canada began producing standardized equipment (Terminal Node Controllers) in quantity for use in amateur radio packet radio networks. In 2003, Rouleau was inducted into CQ Amateur Radio magazine's hall of fame for his work on the Montreal Protocol in 1978.[3]

Not long after this activity began in Canada, amateurs in the US became interested in packet radio, and in 1980, the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) granted authorization for U.S. amateurs to transmit ASCII codes via amateur radio.[4] The first known amateur packet radio activity in the US occurred in San Francisco in December of 1980 when a packet repeater was put into operation on 2 meters by Hank Magnuski, KA6M and the Pacific Packet Radio Society (PPRS).[5] In keeping with the dominance of DARPA and ARPANET at this time, the nascent amateur packet radio network was dubbed the AMPRNet, in DARPA style and Magnuski had obtained IP address allocations in the 44.0.0.0 network for amateur radio use worldwide.

Many groups of amateur radio operators interested in packet radio soon formed throughout the country including the Pacific Packet Radio Society (PPRS) in California, the Tucson Amateur Packet Radio Corporation (TAPR) in Arizona and the Amateur Radio Research and Development Corporation (AMRAD) in Washington, D.C.[6]

By 1983, TAPR was offering the first TNC available in kit form. Packet radio started becoming more and more popular across North America and by 1984 the first packet based bulletin board systems began to appear. Packet radio proved its value for emergency operations following the crash of an Aeromexico airliner in a neighborhood in Cerritos, California the weekend of Labor Day 1986. Volunteers linked several key sites to pass text traffic via packet radio while keeping the voice frequencies clear.

For an objective description of early developments in amateur packet radio, refer to the article "Packet Radio in the Amateur Service".[7]

The most common use of packet radio today is in amateur radio, to construct wireless computer networks. Its name is a reference to the use of packet switching between network nodes. Packet radio networks use the AX.25 data link layer protocol, derived from the X.25 protocol suite and adapted for amateur radio use.

JDay
06-15-2010, 10:08 PM
Just a huge caveat. Don't even think about doing anything work related using this method, as it is illegal. The ARRL book I read for my basic license emphasized this repeatedly. Anything even remotely resembling business can not be done over amateur frequencies.

There are exceptions, such as offering used equipment for sale. However you cannot make a business out of it.

JDay
06-15-2010, 10:10 PM
i cant believe i read all 3 pages...

you guys are dorks. when shtf, im going to be too concerned with finding rabbits and water than to fiddle with some radio crap.

I would advise against trying to survive off a diet of just rabbit, you will starve to death. You need a source of fat in your diet.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rabbit_starvation

Rabbit starvation, also referred to as protein poisoning or mal de caribou, is a form of acute malnutrition caused by excess consumption of any lean meat (e.g., rabbit) coupled with a lack of other sources of nutrients usually in combination with other stressors, such as severe cold or dry environment. Symptoms include diarrhea, headache, fatigue, low blood pressure and heart rate, and a vague discomfort and hunger that can only be satisfied by consumption of fat or carbohydrates.

JDay
06-15-2010, 10:14 PM
The signal you send out can not be encrypted. I don't know the correct laws for it, but I do remember reading something to that effect in my study guide.

The only "encryption" you can use are codes to control a station. However in a SHTF situation FCC rules become null and void. Even now its rare to get busted for breaking them, usually only happens when someone pisses off the local HAMs enough that they track you down.

ArkinDomino
06-16-2010, 9:39 AM
In a SHTF will any "smart phone" even work? I'm running a blackberry tour on verizon...

XYZ
06-16-2010, 10:46 AM
In a SHTF will any "smart phone" even work? I'm running a blackberry tour on verizon...


You've got 4 pages of answers :).