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Thuraya X5-Touch is the world's first satellite smartphone

The Thuraya X5-Touch features a special satellite antenna and the phone is overall bulkier than the average smartphone due to its dedicated hardware. (Source: Android Police)
The Thuraya X5-Touch features a special satellite antenna and the phone is overall bulkier than the average smartphone due to its dedicated hardware. (Source: Android Police)
Thuraya has been making satellite phones for two decades now, but none of these were based on Android and had only limited "smart" capabilities. The new X5-Touch model seamlessly integrates the satellite connections with a mid-range Android smartphone that also comes with two SIM slots for quick switches between GSM and satellite networks.

With the constant expansion of cellular radio grids, it is now considerably harder to get poor signals on modern smartphone models. Of course there still are “unclaimed” territories that do not benefit from any of the new technologies, so people who like to travel and visit all sorts of exotic locations might be wanting to use a satellite phone instead of a cellular one. Satellite phones offer guaranteed coverage all over the world, but they are significantly more expensive and heavier because of the special antenna they incorporate. Thuraya is one of the leading satellite phone makers and the Emirates company has just announced that it will be launching the world's first dual satellite/GSM Android smartphone.

The X5-Touch smartphone from Thuraya comes with a 5.2-inch FHD panel protected by a sheet of Gorilla Glass from Corning and the casing is IP67-certified, so it is resistant to water and dust. Since it is a dual-network phone, it also comes with dual SIM support, which allows for a quick switch between satellite and GSM modes.

Unfortunately, Thuraya did not provide any information about the SoC, RAM and storage capacity specs, but it did mention that the phone will integrate standard navigation features like GPS and Glonass/BeiDou satellite connections. Other specs include dual band WiFi + Bluetooth, NFC, a high amperage battery, front/rear cameras (no specs), plus a dedicated SOS button and advanced navigation hardware.

Availability info has not yet been disclosed for now. Judging by the prices of previous satellite phones from Thuraya, the X5-Touch could end up with a significantly high MSRP, even if the smartphone hardware is at most mid-range.

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2018 04 > Thuraya X5-Touch is the world's first satellite smartphone
Bogdan Solca, 2018-04-12 (Update: 2018-04-12)
Bogdan Solca
Bogdan Solca - News Editor
I stepped into the wonderous IT&C world when I was around 7. I was instantly fascinated by computerized graphics, be them from games or 3D applications like 3D Max. I like to keep myself up to date with all the new technologies that get released at an ever increasing rate these days. I'm also an avid SciFi reader, an astrophysics aficionado and, as of late, a crypto geek.