Basic troubleshooting for all SatPhone handsets

• Do you have a clear view of the sky ?

Satellite phones need a direct line of sight to the satellite.  Make sure you are outside with an open view sky and there are no tall structures blocking the horizon.

• Is the antenna completely extended and pointing toward the sky?

The antenna should ideally always be pointing vertically up to the sky and fully pulled out or extended.

• What messages are shown on the phone screen when you turn it on?

If you see "SIM Error" or "Invalid SIM" it means most of the time that you have not  activated your card. In other cases, it means that the SIM is not properly inserted. Refer to the user manual to make sure you inserted the SIM properly.

• Error Codes?

If you see error codes, please write them down and let MVS support know about these when contacting us.

• How strong is the signal?

If you see that the signal strength is constantly changing, try to change your location, it can be due to a tree or some tall structure obstructing the sky. For some phones such as Thuraya and iSatPhones, you also need to make sure you have a GPS lock.

If there is no signal at all is can also indicate that you are outside of the service area. Thuraya phones for example do NOT work everywhere and specifically not in America

• Where are you located?

Inmarsat and Thuraya systems do not cover the entire planet. Also some service plans are regional. Make sure you are IN the area of service and of course away from any structure that can block the view to the sky.

• You can't always make a call?

Some systems rely on moving satellite such as Iridium and Global Star, therefore Satellite signals can fluctuate and so can the call quality.  If you are sometimes able to make a successful call it most probably means that there is no issue with your equipment.   If you cannot make a call wait for a few moments (10 Minutes or so) and try calling again.

Iridium FAQ Database

• How do I dial out?

To dial FROM your iridium. Press the 0 until you see + then enter the country code (1 for USA) then the number you want to dial. For example to call the USA: +13051234567

• Test Call:

Turn on your phone, Call 1-480-752-5105; If your phone is working, you will hear a call completion confirmation message.

• To CALL COLLECT to an Iridium number

The calling party can dial 480.768.2500. Then follow the prompts. The receiving party  (holder of the Iridium phone) will PAY FOR THE INCOMING CALL.

• How can people call me?

To dial TO your Iridium. Dial the international code of your country (011 for USA, 00 for Europe), then the iridium number. Makes sure that your operator allows to call satellite phone. Sometimes you have to ask to activate this feature (rare).

• Checking prepaid balance

to check balance, please dial 2888  from your Iridium phone (free call) or send an empty SMS to 2888

• Sending a FREE SMS

To send a FREE text message to an iridium phone go to

Using Voicemail

Test your Inmarsat Voice Connection

Make sure you have a registered signal on your satellite phone
Dial +8707 7699 9999
(You may need to dial “00” first)
If the call is successful you will hear a recorded message from Inmarsat.

Troubleshooting BGAN

Questions to answer BEFORE contacting MVS Support

FleetBroadband Best Practices


Inmarsat FAQ Database:

For all Inmarsat Firmware and Support questions:

Support and Firmware Page for the iSatPhone 2

Support and Firmware Page for the iSatPhone PRO :

BGAN Firmware:

FBB and FleetOne Firmware:

Inmarsat Voicemail User Guide

Thuraya Test Call Service

Dial 11 11 2 to test your Thuraya phone
Upon dialing this number, a short confirmation message will be played and if you can hear the message it means your phone is in working condition and your subscription is valid.

Thuraya FAQ Database:

Firmware upgrades for Thurya:

Thuraya Online Prepaid management:

• Making a first call

Thuraya Phones rely on a GPS position to initialise a call. Before you make your first call, please first make sure your SIM has been activated, you  are in the coverage area, outdoors and have a clear view of the sky.  If you have received a phone number with your THuraya, it means that the SIM card is activated.  The first call can take up to 30 minutes to complete, be patient. Stay outside and wait for the phone to acquire a GPS signal, then it will register the phone with the Thuraya Network. If you can't make this first call, you can go to the GPS menu of your phone and get your position, this will ensure that you have the latest position then try again to make a call.

• How can I set up my Voice Mail?

  • Dial 123 to access the voice mail system for the first time.
  • Choose your language by pressing, 1- For English, 2- For Arabic, 3- For French.
  • Create a password (4-6 digits) and press #, re-enter your password and press #.
  • To program your voice mail press 3.
  • From the phone press MENU 3-1 to choose which calls you wants to be diverting to your voice mail.
  • To listen to your messages, dial 123.

• How does Thuraya dual mode feature work?

With your Thuraya phone and Thuraya SIM, you can make calls via satellite from anywhere within the coverage area. You also have the option of roaming from Thuraya into a local GSM operator given that Thuraya has established a roaming agreement with your local GSM operator.

With your Thuraya phone and GSM SIM, you will be automatically accessing your local GSM operator’s network. Hence, your calls will be billed on your normal GSM bill. You also have the option to roam into Thuraya’s network to access satellite services given that Thuraya has already established a roaming agreement with your local GSM operator. With a GSM phone and a Thuraya SIM, you will be roaming from Thuraya into your local GSM operator network given that Thuraya has already established a roaming agreement with your local GSM operator. Nevertheless, it will be impossible to access Thuraya services through your GSM phone because Thuraya phones have special equipment that makes communication with the satellite possible.

Please contact MVS directly for VSAT support.

When contacting us please have the following ready

  • Serial Numbers
  • VSAT Model and date of purchase
  • Region you are active in
  • GPS Position
  • Description of the area you are located (any high rises, roof?)
  • Error Codes
  • Phone number of the VSAT System
  • Applications you are attempting to use