In partnership with T-Mobile, SpaceX revealed that it would deliver satellite access to cellphones last week. Afterward, Google declared that it would support satellite connectivity in the upcoming Android 14 version and work with partners to make the technology available.
Hiroshi Lockheimer, Vice President of Platforms and Ecosystems at Google, broke the news, recalling the challenges faced in getting 3G + Wi-Fi to work on the original Android phone HTC Dream, also known as the T-Mobile G1.
It should be mentioned, however, that satellite connectivity in phones won’t provide high-speed internet; instead, it focuses on eliminating areas where there is no cellular connectivity and helping in emergencies.
Text messaging, MMS, and a few specific messaging apps will be supported first, according to T-Mobile. The company continued by saying that, in the long run, they would also think about providing data and voice. The network carrier anticipates beginning the initial beta in the latter half of 2023. Additionally, while support for older phones and Android devices will be provided, adding operating system-level support would be very helpful.
Nevertheless, renowned Apple analyst Ming Chi-Kuo has claimed that Apple is collaborating with Globalstar to add satellite connectivity to the iPhone 14 series. However, the tech giant would have to disable the feature until it can obtain a legal license in India.