Bullitt teases a phone with satellite messaging, launching in early 2023

(Pocket-lint) – Bullitt might not be a brand you’re familiar with, but the British company has long been making tough phones, most commonly under the CAT brand.

While its devices might not be the first choice of your typical smartphone buyer, the company has thrown its hat into the satellite communication ring, with a note on its website inviting interested customers to sign up for updates.

The new smartphone – as yet unnamed – is due to launch in Q1 2023 and we’d guess that the launch venue might be Mobile World Congress 2023 – which would suggest some time around late February.

The company has confirmed that the phone will switch seamlessly between Wi-Fi, cellular and satellite communication and that this has required the use of a customised chipset, an app to handle the messaging, and infrastructure at satellite ground stations.

The company has declined to say what that customised chipset might be, but we know that both Qualcomm and MediaTek are working on satellite connectivity.

We’ve also recently seen Huawei launch satellite messaging on the Mate 50 using Qualcomm hardware – and Qualcomm powers the Bullitt-built CAT S62 Pro, so we’re guessing it’s Qualcomm hardware in this future device too.

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Bullitt declined to confirm what satellite network(s) the phone might use, but has confirmed that you’ll need a satellite messaging subscriber plan to use the proprietary service run by Bullitt. The user is then free to use whatever terrestrial network they choose for normal connections.

But why would you want satellite messaging? The idea is to eliminate dead spots, so that you can stay in touch with work or family when you’re in remote regions that have no terrestrial cellular connectivity.

We’re expecting plenty of talk about satellite communication over the coming years and it looks like Bullitt wants to be part of that conversation.

Writing by Chris Hall.

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