Clever Trick with Iridium GO Email Cuts Costs

Iridium GO! -- Finally Global Satellite Connectivity for Your Smartphone.  Iridium Go email is easy to use and global.

The Iridium GO! provides satellite connectivity for your iPhone or Android. A simple ap lets you make phone calls, send and receive text messages, or browse the web.

Checking Your Iridium GO Email Account Requires Using Iridium Airtime

It is true that accessing the email address that Iridium provides when your register your Iridium GO! always requires that you use expensive Iridium airtime.   Many of Outfitter Satellites customers would like to check their inbox for free when they have a terrestrial internet connection.  They feel they should only have to use Iridium airtime when a terrestrial internet connection isn’t available.

We agree, but it is not possible yet.  Here is a clever work around.  Use your Iridium GO!’s fetch feature to access a third-party email account such as Hotmail.

Now, you can use your Hotmail account instead of as your Iridium GO email destination address.   Give out the Hotmail account instead of the address.  When you are in a remote location, use the Iridium GO to access your Hotmail account.  Check your Hotmail account in the normal fashion when you have a terrestrial internet connection.  Problem solved.

Here is how to do it!

  1. The Iridium GO email fetch software is preconfigured for use with AOL, MSN, Hotmail, Yahoo, or ATT email addresses, but other email providers can be used with the Iridium GO email fetch feature, too.  To improve readability, we will assume you chose Hotmail.
  2. We recommend that you use a dedicated Hotmail email account as your Iridium GO email address.  Don’t publicize this Hotmail account except to close friends and associates.  This will help assure that very little spam finds its way to your Iridium GO email address.
  3. From the Iridium Mail & Web app home screen, go to <Settings> <Your Account> <Remote servers configuration> <+>.  Then, complete the following required information:
    1. Account Type:  Select the appropriate type as provided by the internet service provider managing the remote mail server.   Again, we suggest Hotmail as your Iridium GO email provider, but the settings for five popular email providers are preconfigured.  In fact you can obtain the settings from your existing email provider (ex. POP3 or IMAP) and configure fetch for virtually any email account.
    2. User name:  In this field, enter the User ID of the account to be fetched, e.g. the Hotmail in our example.  Some internet service provider may require the full email address.
    3. Account password:  Enter the Password of the account to be fetched, e.g. Hotmail in our example.
    4. Server address:  If this field is not automatically populated, enter the remote server name as provided by the internet service provider managing the remote mail server.
    5. Port number:   If this field is to automatically populated, enter the remote server port number as provided by the internet service provider managing the remote mail server.
    6. Use SSL:  Enable SSL if required by the internet service provider managing the remote mail server.
    7. Enabled: Select ON to enable fetching.
    8. Tap Save
  4. Go to Remote Fetch Settings:
    1. Set “Remote fetch” on.
    2. “Fetch Asynchronously” should be on.
    3. “Display extended debugging information” should normally be off.  It can be turned on to enable debug logging if you are having trouble setting up the new Hotmail account.
    4. “Fetch number per cycle” should be set to 10.   This parameter controls the maximum number of emails to transfer from the remote account during a single session.  Because of the slow 2400-2800 bps internet speed of the Iridium GO, choosing too large a number here may bog down the fetch process.  If you find that fetch is bogging down lower the number to 5.

Understanding How Your Iridium GO Email is Using Fetch with Hotmail

Emails from your Hotmail inbox can only be transferred to your  account when an Iridium Mail & Web connection is made through your Iridium GO!.   Furthermore getting all the new email out of your Hotmail inbox may take multiple Send/Receive sessions using the Iridium Mail & Web app with your Iridium GO!.   It takes one Send/Receive mail session to send the “fetch email” request to your Hotmail account.  Then a second send/receive session will retrieves up to 10 messages from your Hotmail inbox.   If there is a lot of new email in your Hotmail account it may take multiple additional sessions downloading 10 emails at a time.

It is a good idea when you do have a broadband terrestrial internet connection to clear your Hotmail inbox so you won’t have to do it later over the Iridium GO!, which results in Iridium airtime expenses.

Here is one last clever trick.  The SMS Alerts feature can be used to notify you when new Hotmail email is ready for download.



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