The AST Group of companies (AST), a leading global provider of satellite and radio communications, including custom satellite solutions, Push-to-Talk and remote asset management and tracking is excited to have been selected as a Service Provider for Iridium PTT.
Iridium PTT is the worlds first global, satellite-based push-to-talk service, enabling instant communication between participants located anywhere on earth. Iridium PTT provides a fast, simple, and global service making the Iridium network available to tens, or tens of thousands of devices with the push of a single button.
Iridium PTT is comprised of three components that work seamlessly to provide a ubiquitous solution globally: the Iridium PTT service delivered through the Iridium Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellite constellation; the Iridium Command Center, the cloud-based management system where all radios and talkgroups are managed; and the Iridium PTT radios, including both the Iridium Extreme® PTT as well as other satellite or hybrid PTT devices powered by the Iridium PTT 9523 Core transceiver, which allows Value Added Manufacturers (VAMs) the capability to further expand enterprise applications for Iridium PTT.
The Iridium PTT Command Center is the first ever cloud-based customer management system for satellite-based push-to-talk solutions. The Command Center gives organizations the ability to easily manage and define the geographic coverage for each needed talkgroup. The coverage areas are created using a graphical map interface fueled by Google Maps. Through the Command Center, administrators can quickly and easily define which devices/users are members of specific talkgroups and how many talkgroups are needed. As situations evolve, managers are able to make changes to groups dynamically, and these are carried out over-the-air to Iridium PTT devices within seconds.
“Iridium PTT products are currently shipping, and the demand and excitement we are seeing for the Iridium PTT solution is fantastic; it underscores the need for a truly global, secure, reliable communication solution for workgroups,” said Joel Thompson, vice president and general manager, terrestrial business unit, Iridium. “This is a stellar group of service providers that represent some of the very best across the industry; we’re pleased to be partnering with them to bring this solution to new customers globally.”
Iridium PTT, like most commercial and private trunked radio services solutions, uses half-duplex communication, like a walkie-talkie, where one party talks to other participants in a group who serve as listeners. The coverage provided by the Iridium satellite network, as well as advanced security and features, elevates this service far above and beyond what is currently offered today.
“Iridium PTT allows users to quickly initiate talkgroup sessions, making it ideal for remote and fast-paced industries and deployments,” said Dan Tillet, director, product management, Iridium. “To provide one use case scenario, during summer months forest fires are prevalent in the U.S. in very remote locations. Typically, these areas do not have terrestrial wireless communications available. Iridium PTT is the ideal solution for supporting a fire team’s field communications needs with each other and other first responders.”
Iridium PTT works with Iridium’s existing constellation and is compatible with Iridium NEXT, the company’s next-generation satellite constellation, which is scheduled to begin launching in late 2015 and to be completed in late 2017.