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Skylo Expands Satellite Access for IoT and Smart Phones With Quectel and Bullitt 

By Rachel Jewett | January 6, 2023

Quectel’s series of 5G-ready LPWA modules will support satellite non-terrestrial networks, with Skylo as the satellite partner. Photo: Quectel

Satellite IoT startup Skylo announced partnerships Jan. 5 with both smartphone manufacturer Bullitt Group and IoT solutions company Quectel aimed at expanding connectivity through satellite through smart phones and IoT devices. 

IoT solutions company Quectel announced its series of 5G-ready LPWA modules will support satellite non-terrestrial networks, allowing customers to seamlessly connect via cellular or satellite, with Skylo as the satellite partner. 

Skylo’s network is backed by Inmarsat satellite connectivity. Skylo operates its own 3GPP standards-based NTN RAN and Core and is installed in existing ground stations that allow for large geographic coverage supported by geostationary satellite networks.

“We’re truly excited to partner with Quectel Wireless Solutions, a leading global IoT solutions provider, to bring NTN to the mass market, giving customers a better connectivity experience as well as accessibility for new applications,” said Tarun Gupta, chief product officer for Skylo. “This advancement is also an upgrade to existing modules that will allow for NTN capabilities using 3GPP standards-based firmware, making space-based connections no different than roaming between two networks.”

Separately, Bullitt announced a new Motorola rugged smartphone with two-way satellite messaging technology via Skylo connectivity. Bullitt has developed proprietary software and service components to provide satellite text messaging via an app, working with chipset supplier MediaTek, and critical event response specialists FocusPoint International. 

The next device in Motorola’s “defy” line of rugged smartphones will have Bullitt’s satellite messaging service. The service will be able to connect via satellite when Wi-Fi or cellular coverage are not available, and send a message via satellite. Skylo is the satellite connectivity partner. 

“We’re thrilled to partner with Skylo in bringing satellite messaging to our extraordinary smartphones. We expect this new satellite messaging service to set a new standard for the mobile industry and we can’t wait for our customers to experience it when they’re on their next outdoor adventure”, said Richard Wharton, co-founder for Bullitt Group. “Whether you’re driving through an area without mobile coverage, or hiking in the Highlands, you’re always connected.”