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Many of the participating Iridium satellites had been shut down in 2000 ; the remaining ones still offer support for every point on earth besides Poland,North Korea and Cuba
(source: 'All Road Communications')
Internet access via additionally available Data Kit at a speed of 18 KBit/second.
SMS textmessage receipt free of charge ; sending costs about 50 cents per message
Last available prices in US-$ per minute (when Turkey had a nearly nationwide GSM + fixed phone system breakdown due to a major earthquake)
Two of the reported successor systems:
The complete system (covering at least the European and Arabic region) with a ground station in Sharjah
(United Arabic Emirates) was built for 1.1 billion US-$ by
Hughes Network Systems and Boeing Satellite Systems
note: Some of the newer Thuraya phones support additionally downloaded Java(TM) applications.
note: Satellite Phone communication that exceeds a certain profile usually leads to detection and confiscation of
the phone in some countries of the Middle East,
like Syria and Oman (source: 'All Road Communications')