Australian designed and developed global messaging solution debuts in Australia and North America

Australian designed and developed global messaging solution debuts in Australia and North America

The first solution of its kind based on satellite, cellular and Wi-Fi® standards

ZOLEO Inc., an emerging global messaging solutions company, today announced the immediate availability of ZOLEO™ – the world’s first truly seamless global messaging and personal safety solution for smartphone users – in the United States, Canada, and Australia.

The flagship product, which is designed and developed by ASX-listed Beam Communications Holdings Limited (ASX: BCC) and offered through its joint venture with Canadian-based Roadpost Inc., is the first messaging solution of its kind based on Iridium® Short Burst Data® (SBD®), cellular and Wi-Fi standards.

The compact ZOLEO device connects via Bluetooth® with a free app on the user’s Android® or Apple® smartphone/tablet, to provide a uniquely seamless global messaging experience that follows them in and out of mobile coverage.

Personal safety features like check-in, weather forecasts, and 24/7 worldwide SOS alerts offer extra peace-of-mind when venturing off-the-grid. Users also receive a dedicated SMS number and ZOLEO email address.

“Until now, no company in the mobile satellite sector has conquered what is arguably the ‘killer app’ of the smartphone age – messaging,” explains Morris Shawn, President of ZOLEO Inc. and Roadpost Inc.

“ZOLEO’s messaging capability reflects a deep integration of capabilities between the user’s smartphone, the ZOLEO mobile app, the ZOLEO device and a sophisticated back end messaging infrastructure.”

Aimed at anyone who lives in rural or remote locations or who travels out of mobile coverage for work or recreation, ZOLEO extends the user’s smartphone coverage to everywhere and seamlessly routes messages over the lowest cost network available.

When users travel beyond mobile coverage, the ZOLEO device connects with the free app on their phone/tablet, allowing the user to send/receive messages anywhere on earth via the Iridium satellite network, which provides complete coverage of the globe through 66 interlinked low-earth orbit (LEO) satellites.  Uniquely, when users are within mobile coverage the ZOLEO app seamlessly delivers messages over cellular or Wi-Fi.

“These messaging features, along with SOS alerting and GPS location reporting, make the ZOLEO messaging experience far more seamless and familiar than anything on the market today,” says Michael Capocchi, Vice President of ZOLEO Inc. and Managing Director of Beam.

Unique Capabilities

ZOLEO gives rise to new two-way messaging capabilities not currently offered by other satellite communicators, which include:

  • A dedicated SMS number and email address that makes it easy for contacts to reach you, as opposed to having to wait for a message from you to which they can reply.
  • A familiar, easy-to-use messaging experience for smartphone users.
  • An app that seamlessly transitions between Wi-Fi, cellular and SBD over the Iridium satellite network (users do not need a ZOLEO device to send and receive messages if they are connected to the Internet).
  • Ability to send long messages of 950 characters or more, as opposed the 160-character text/SMS message limit associated with other satellite messaging devices.

SOS alerts and check-in can be sent via the mobile app or directly through built-in buttons on the device. SOS alerts are sent to GEOS, a professional 24/7 emergency monitoring and dispatch service that is included with the monthly ZOLEO subscription. SOS messages are transmitted via the Iridium network, and app users can exchange updates with GEOS throughout their emergency. To access the Iridium satellite network, the ZOLEO device requires a monthly airtime subscription. For more details visit zoleo.com/plans.

The ZOLEO satellite communicator is compact, lightweight and provides over 200 hours of battery life. It is designed to operate in temperatures ranging from -20°C to 55°C, is shock-resistant and features the world’s first IP68 rating for water and dust resistance. Compatible accessories enable it to be worn on a belt, tethered to a backpack or mounted in a vehicle, vessel or cabin. These features make ZOLEO a reliable global messaging and personal safety companion for users under virtually any conditions.

“Satellite mobile messaging solutions are an increasingly popular means of staying connected when off the grid,” said Bryan Hartin, Executive Vice President, Sales and Marketing, Iridium.

“The ZOLEO device is a great example of two Iridium partners coming together, taking Iridium core technology, and building a unique solution that will automatically transition from local cellular connectivity to satellite connectivity when needed.”

ZOLEO aims to be the value leader in its category with an MSRP of A$345, and monthly satellite messaging plans ranging from A$32 to A$80 for an unlimited usage plan. All ZOLEO plans include the option to suspend service temporarily when not in use. To learn more, visit: www.zoleo.com.

Available now, the ZOLEO satellite communicator can be purchased from authorised retailers in the United States, Canada and Australia, with other regions to follow. Australian consumers can purchase the device at SatPhone Shop (https://satphoneshop.com/), Telstra’s largest mobile satellite dealer.

To date, around 20 retailers across Australia and New Zealand have registered their interest in selling ZOLEO.

Significant Market Appeal

Wireless services have become indispensable to most consumers, whether to stay connected with friends and family, or while working or on the move. Today’s consumers may have mobile coverage where they live, yet much of the world’s land mass and oceans are not covered by mobile networks. This represents a significant gap for mobile subscribers, and a significant opportunity for ZOLEO.

Development of the ZOLEO solution was based on thorough market research, including focus groups with target consumers that reside on the fringe of mobile coverage, outdoor enthusiasts and employers concerned with the safety of remote or lone workers. ZOLEO was specifically designed for messaging and SOS alerting with 96% of surveyed respondents rating the two features as the biggest reasons to purchase such a device.

“It took Beam less than two years to design and build ZOLEO. The quick turnaround reflects Beam’s long history of developing unique mobile satellite solutions to industry leading customers like Iridium, Telstra and Thuraya,” said Mr Capocchi.

“We are very pleased to have partnered with an established North American satellite equipment reseller like Roadpost to deliver a low-cost global solution with such mass appeal. We think ZOLEO will change the way consumers come to view satellite communications.”