Hands on at CTIA with the TerreStar Genus Windows Mobile 6.5.3 satellite phone

Once a year or so we get another look at a Windows Mobile satellite phone, and such is the case with the TerreStar Genus, billed as the world's first smartphone with 3G and satellite capability. Unfortunately there's no hand-off directly from 3G to satellite, so you effectively have to throw a switch from one to the other.

But is that really something we worry about? Heck, no! It's a feakin' Windows Mobile 6.5.3 satellite phone! It's running the 850/900/1800/1900MHz bands, so you'll be rocking it on AT&T. It sports a 2.6-inch 320x240 QVGA touchscreen, 100MB of "end-user memory," a 1400 mAh battery, H.264 video playback, a 3MP camera, microUSB, microSD, GPS, WiFi b/g, USB 2.0 (Class 2 only, though) and ... oh, yeah, it talks to satellites.

Not exactly the sort of thing we expect to be using, but if you're up in, say, Alaska, you're gonna want one of these babies.

More pics and hands-on video at CTIA after the break.

Phil is the father of two beautiful girls and is the Dad behind Modern Dad. Before that he spent seven years at the helm of Android Central. Before that he spent a decade in a newsroom of a two-time Pulitzer Prize-finalist newspaper. Before that — well, we don't talk much about those days. Subscribe to the Modern Dad newsletter!

  • Who would want this? Sat phones are so 80s.
    Terresterial networks have covered most of the land mass in the US...
  • Obviously not people in the US. It's for a very select clientele that requires service when they are in very remote places...
  • This Phone is perfect for outdoors men and people in remote areas. I've been plenty of places in the US with little or no cell reception, although those places are becoming more rare. This is also great for maritime travel or global trekkers in general, since you wont need to swap out SIM cards or have to switch carriers is Europe or Asia countries.
  • Who would want one of these? Phil hit the nail on the head... Alaskans. I foresee the co. I work for buying at least 10 right off the bat. Very Kewl.
  • You people must live in the eastern half of the U.S. or California. Here in Idaho most of the state has no cell coverage. Most of the nearby mountain states are about the same. It would be nice to have the obtion of making a call if I need to when I'm out for a few days.
  • very interesting, The first thing I did when I saw this was to buy stock in this breakout company, TSTR
  • yeah !! its still cheap, wait till this one hits the market
  • For those in the urban jungle, no need. For those of us in the rural areas with 50-70 coverage - big need. In my job, I have to carry an AT&T phone, Verizon phone and an Iridium phone to ensure coverage 100% of the time. This is a great new tool for emergency responders. Oh, by the way, hope your electricity doesn't go out in the jungle.....
  • well, the main customers will be businesses and mostly for first responders (emergency, firefighters, homeland security, police departments etc...) as we have seen in big disasters, wireless networks and landline networks get jammed or distroyed (hearthquake etc..). As an alternative, first responders will have the satellite network to fall back on.