How Qualcomm is bringing satellite-based messaging to Android smartphones
Qualcomm announced at CES 2023 that it is readying a satellite-based two-way messaging service for Android smartphones and other tech products. The American chipmaker said that this feature will first be released on devices sporting the flagship Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chipset. The 'Snapdragon Satellite' service will allow you to send and receive emergency messages, SMS, and texts on eligible devices.
Why does this story matter?
- A similar satellite-based messaging feature is available on Apple's latest iPhone 14 series, which permits users to send emergency SOS messages. However, this option is currently available only in the UK, France, USA, Canada, Ireland, and Germany.
- There is no information as yet if Qualcomm's satellite service will be supported on smartphones in India when it makes its debut.
The messaging service will be launched in select markets
Qualcomm's latest satellite-based messaging service will be available on "next-generation smartphones" and is expected to be launched in select regions in the second half of 2023. Along with smartphones, the company is also planning to extend this feature to laptops, tablets, and IoT devices. This allows room for manufacturers and app developers to develop services that would support the Snapdragon Satellite connectivity.
Qualcomm has partnered with Iridium to launch its service
Qualcomm will offer coverage "from pole to pole" and the service will be accessible in remote, rural, and offshore areas as well. Apart from emergency purposes, users will also be able to use the service for recreational reasons as well. The company has collaborated with satellite telecommunications company Iridium to establish its two-way messaging service, which will initially be available on Android.
Garmin also intends to partner with Qualcomm
Garmin, known for its GPS-based smartwatches, intends to partner with Qualcomm to bring the messaging feature to its devices. Garmin has its own emergency feature which gets activated when the user clicks on the SOS button that connects them to the Garmin Response team.