Thuraya XT’s data speed makes it appealing to expeditionists

Press release
Published May 25th, 2011 - 10:03 GMT

When embarking on a new mountain expedition, professional mountaineer Arnold Coster ensures that he has a Thuraya XT handheld as part of his gear. He has deployed the satellite handheld, which is known as the world’s toughest satellite phone, for his last six 8,000 meter mountaineering adventures. His latest mountain challenge has been a trek up Everest where he has relied heavily on the data services of Thuraya XT, which provides the fastest data service in the satellite handheld market. 

“I have been using the Thuraya XT data connection for my last six expeditions. This reliable service allows me to update my website, receive weather forecasts and stay in touch with my family so that they do not feel that I am far away or out of reach,” said Mr. Coster. 

Thuraya XT handheld supports packet data services (GmPRS) with speeds up to 60 kbps, which is currently the fastest data service on any satellite phone. Through the GmPRS data connection, he can also easily send and receive emails, thus keeping up with daily business and social communications. 

“I am also able to post regular updates on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn which helps keep me connected. Additionally, I can send through pictures which are large enough to be viewed on the web. And on a daily basis I receive the weather forecast as a small .gif file which is very practical considering the circumstances in such a remote area,” elaborated Mr. Coster. 

Despite the challenging environment that Mr. Coster endures, he stated, “Thuraya satellites are stationed about 35000 kilometers above the earth, which is helpful and important for reliable communication while climbing high mountainous areas. Even if I encounter high mountain peaks, I do not have problems accessing the signal with Thuraya XT.” 

“I use a small notebook that I connect with the Thuraya XT phone and no matter how high the mountain, this set up works easily, quickly and reliably,” concluded Mr. Coster. 

The Thuraya XT handheld has been provided to Mr. Coster by Xtralink, one of Thuraya’s Service Partners. Xtra-link’s Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Hans Kuijt said, “When we provided Mr. Coster with a Thuraya XT satellite handheld, we were certain that we were safeguarding his ability to communicate securely in emergency situations no matter where he was located in the Himalayas. Through the phone’s data services we have helped bring the digital world to him even on Everest to provide both him and his family a sense of proximity.” 

Thuraya XT is the only satellite handheld to be IP54/IK03 certified making it splash water, dust and shock proof. It has unique walk and talk capabilities and is the only satellite handheld to provide GPS waypoint navigation.

Background Information


​Thuraya, is the mobile satellite services subsidiary of Yahsat, a leading global satellite operator based in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), fully owned by Mubadala Investment Company, the investment vehicle of the Government of Abu Dhabi. Established in 1997, Thuraya is the UAE’s first home grown satellite operator. We offer innovative communications solutions to a variety of sectors including energy, government, broadcast media, maritime, military, aerospace and humanitarian NGO.

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