top of page

Scottish Mountain Rescue Downplay Defy Satellite’s Capabilities

Scottish Mountain Rescue (SMR), the umbrella body for Mountain Rescue teams across Scotland, downplayed the capabilities of the recently launched Defy Satellite device.


Well-equipped hikers navigate the Scottish Highlands, Credits: Scottish Mountain Rescue



Scottish Mountain Rescue (SMR), the umbrella body for Mountain Rescue teams across Scotland, downplayed the capabilities of the recently launched Defy Satellite device.

The device, launched in February 2023, has been touted as able to send and receive text messages via satellite and a breakthrough for communicating within mobile dead zones

However, Hedley Phillips, the Radio Officer for SMR downplayed the ability of this device in a statement to Breakthrough Press.
“Regarding whether we would encourage people to use this technology, the answer would be no,” he said.

Phillip’s statement contrasts that of Sam Cross, who in a review for T3 Magazine declared the product as “fantastic”, “value for money”, and a “no-brainer for anyone spending time out of signal range.”

Phillips noted how an existing high network coverage in Scotland lessened a need for resolutions of dead zone communication. “Despite Scotland being remote, we actually have extensive network coverage in the majority of hills,” he explained.

While Defy has been proposed as useful during emergencies and wilderness adventures, it may prove less necessary if Scotland’s network coverage provides wide scope for communication regardless of possession of the Defy Satellite technology.

Continuing, Phillips explained all 999 calls are routed through any provider, regardless of a user's contract or SIM, and are not bound to a specific network.
The device costs £99 on its own, or £149 for a bundle which additionally includes a subscription to a service plan of 30 messages per month – the cheapest messaging plan for this device.

Phillips noted how this cost could be off-putting for potential users. “The cost of the unit, including the subscription would be a barrier to a lot of hill users,” he said
Phillips said the technology has been previously implemented in devices such as the Apple iPhone 14; a device which costs in the region of £769.00.

"The Apple iPhone 14 already has this functionality, and the Android phones [new models compatible with Defy Satellite] will be released soon. But saying that, buying an iPhone 14 isn't cheap, so there's another barrier.” Phillips continued.

Despite downplaying the significance of this technology, Phillips noted how opportunities may arise for its use. In the event that a mobile phone signal couldn't be found, then this technology would prove useful,” Phillips said.

The SMR is a voluntary team of mountain rescuers on call 24 hours a day, 365 days a year to respond to emergencies. In 2021, the SMR was called out to deal with a total of 660 incidents, and volunteers spent a total of 31,799 hours dealing with these incidents.







Comentarios


Top Stories

Check back soon
Once posts are published, you’ll see them here.
bottom of page