Reviewers testing BGAN for an adventure equipment website have reported how they were able to put the equipment to use in a real-life emergency.
The Overland Tech & Travel bloggers were provided with a Hughes 9202 BGAN terminal by Inmarsat service provider OCENS.
Jonathan and Roseann Hanson's plan had been to evaluate it by checking email and calling friends while celebrating New Year on a remote beach in Mexico.
But then they spotted locals towing an empty boat they had found capsized, which the reviewers had seen three men setting out in on the previous day.
On their website, the Hansons describe how, within minutes, they were able to set up the terminal and get a satellite internet connection to look up the phone number for the nearest marina.
They made a call and the marina alerted the Mexican Coast Guard, who dispatched a spotter aircraft and two inflatable boats.
Sadly the body of one of the fishermen was recovered. Reports by local people that a flotation device and footprints had been found on a nearby beach were again relayed using BGAN, but the Hansons confirm the official search for the missing men was later called off.