Thanks, Rex & BackpackingLight for this well-researched and informative guide. Was I the only one who wondered, only briefly of course, "how much would a carrier pigeon weigh...and eat?"
Perspective makes all the difference. Like any gear, suitability of a sat phone (or other sat device) depends on the best match with performance criteria needed in any given situation/application. For emergencies, the user's understanding of the inevitable tradeoffs/shortcomings is crucial. This article, like most BPL pieces, helps users sort cost/benefit in a practical, perhaps critical way before heading out to the field.
Looking forward to Part Two and thanks again!