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Iridium Mail and Web App Problems and Solutions for the Iridium GO!

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Iridium has just released this document that describes some of the problems surrounding the use of the new Iridium Mail and Web application which is used for the Iridium GO!. 

The Iridium Mail & Web App gives the Iridium GO! the email, and browser capabilities, and certain model phones, and firmware versions have been having some problems in particular with some of the background data type apps.

So please read this IMPORTANT document below, as this might be an issue you have had, and can possibly help you solve. If you have any questions of course, you can always call us here at NorthernAxcess.

"Iridium® Mail & Web Mobile App Bulletin

Iridium Mail & Web is a free application for Android and Apple iOS devices that accelerates email messaging and web browsing while connected to Iridium Wi-Fi solutions — allowing you to keep in touch with work, family and friends — anytime, anywhere.

Compatible with Iridium GO!TM and Iridium AxcessPoint, the app uses compression and network-based filters to deliver global capabilities otherwise not possible with standard apps designed for cellular and broadband networks.

Iridium has received reports of certain irregularities in the Iridium Mail & Web application. Iridium has identified these concerns and is committed to provide its app users with an enriched experience by taking utmost measures to resolve these issues.

Kindly take note that data services supported on the Iridium GO! utilize a narrowband data connection that offers 2.4kbps speeds suited for specially designed applications with restricted ability to connect to standard web pages. As such, you should not be expecting to replicate the connectivity speeds experienced in your home, office or cellular network.

The Iridium Mail & Web application is designed to support mobile web browsing to a selection of compressed sites featured on www.iridium.com/mobile. More importantly, a variety of data apps are coming soon from 3rd party developers that will be featured on the Iridium GO! apps section. These apps will add email capabilities to additional device platforms (ex. PC/MAC), help boaters plan around future weather patterns (GRIB files), support lone worker safety, and more. 

Iridium has developed both short term and long term approaches to help alleviate the identified reports. Details of the reports, their symptoms, affected platforms, and steps to resolve them are outlined below.

Report 1: Iridium Mail & Web app does not allow users to surf the web

  • Affected platforms: Apple iOS 7 or later
  • Symptoms: “Failed to connect: Proxy refusing connection” error messages in Opera Mini browser
  • Brief description of the issue: Iridium Mail & Web requires users to install Opera Mini browser on their mobile Apple devices. When a connection is being established by Iridium GO! device to the network, Opera browser performs a DNS lookup to go online. Since DNS lookups are also used by a wide variety of mobile apps such as iCloud, Dropbox, other Cloud-based services, the network connection is overwhelmed due to the amount of DNS lookup requests being sent by such apps. These requests prevent Opera Mini browser to request any content for a user- specified url or website resulting in “Failed to connect: Proxy refusing connection” error message.
  • Resolution: Iridium strongly advises iOS users to disable various apps, including cloud-based apps that run in the background. The following procedures should be performed before using the Iridium Mail & Web app with Iridium GO!:
    1. 1) Ensure that “Data Savings’ mode is enabled on the Opera Mini browser
    2. 2) Disable iCloud, Dropbox, other commonly used services on the mobile device.

o Go to Settings > iTunes & App Stores and turn off Automatic downloads for all apps. Also turn off iTunes Match.

o Go to Settings > iCloud and turn off Find my iPhone, and iCloud Backup (within ‘Storage & Backup’ menu)

  1. 3) Disable Photo Stream on the mobile deviceo Go to Settings > Photos & Camera and turn off My Photo Stream.
  2. 4) Disable any Social Media or Audio/Video conferencing apps such as Skype, FaceTime within Settings on the mobile device
  3. 5) Disable Location Services on the mobile device. Steps to follow:

o Go to Settings > Privacy > Location Services. Turn off location services

for all apps except Iridium GO! and Iridium Mail & Web apps.

o Go to Settings > Privacy > Location Services > System Services and turn off all options except Compass Calibration and Setting Time Zone

6) Enable only manual fetching of emails on the mobile deviceo Go to Settings > Mails, Contacts, Calendars > Fetch New Data and turn

off ‘Push’ option.

o Go to Settings > Mails, Contacts, Calendars > Fetch New Data and set ‘Fetch’ option to ‘Manually’.

In order to completely mitigate the effect of apps & services requiring DNS communication with the network, Iridium is implementing software changes to Iridium GO! device and Iridium Mail & Web app. These updates are expected to be available in Q1 2015. This release will automatically close off cloud-based connections for iOS.

Recommended tips

Users are also strongly advised to follow these recommended tips for effective use of satellite data and achieve improved experience with the internet, as it is not as fast as cellular data and usually costs more:

  • Visit the list of mobile websites displayed at www.iridium.com/mobile
  • Use the mobile, low bandwidth-optimized version of Google search

    website: http://www.google.com/gwt/n.

    Check the ‘Hide Images’ option to further improve loading time for a website.

  • Use mobile-optimized versions of websites
  • Avoid large downloads such as large email attachments, music or pictures
  • Reduce the image quality size when sending as an email attachment
  • Use websites that offer text-only browsing option

    Report 2: Iridium Mail & Web app seems to be connected to the Iridium network but users are unable to send email, social media updates or update weather forecasts

  • Affected platforms: Apple iOS 6.1 or later, Android 2.3 or later
  • Symptoms: Error messages such as “Connection Failed”, “Could not connect to the

    network” displayed during network connection phase

  • Brief description: Iridium Mail & Web utilizes the integration capabilities offered by Iridium GO!. When a user initiates a network connection to go online from the app and there is sufficient satellite signal strength available, Iridium GO! authenticates the user with Iridium’s backend authorization systems and starts a network connection. The authentication phase can sometimes fail resulting in the app unable to open a network connection. 
  •  Resolution: Iridium plans to address this issue with a mid-October update to the Iridium Mail & Web app. This update will include increased connection buffers to improve connection reliability. In the interim, users are advised to redial the connection in case of an authentication failure."        

Again for any info on the Iridium GO!, or the Mail and Web App feel free to view this on our support section of our site at http://www.northernaxcess.com

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