Most BGAN terminals have a fax port, which is a standard RJ-11 phone connection. The Inmarsat network provides a group-3 fax-capable line that works with some fax machines. Below is a Brother Fax 575 Personal Paper Fax machine connected to a Hughes 9202 from the back of an SUV hatch opening.
Fax service with Ground Control needs to be activated upon service activation. Activation of this service is free and fax charges are charged the same as any voice call. Fax lines also have their own unique phone number separate from the voice number of the BGAN terminal. We must state that faxing over BGAN is not as easy as faxing over a terrestrial phone line – and a fax transmission will often fail.
Please refer to your BGAN terminal users manual for using the fax port of that terminal.
Fax machines are bulky and don’t make good companion accessories for BGAN terminals. We’ve found the portable hand scanners available today for $60 USD work exceptionally well, and are quite robust. These scanners simply roll down a document and convert that document into a high-resolution .jpg file instantly. Image files are then transferred to any computer via USB cable, much like a digital camera, and the files can be emailed anywhere.
Pictured above is a hand scanner with a Wideye Saber 1 terminal and a BGAN-optimized laptop from Ground Control. Scanning a document is as easy as pressing a button, rolling the scanner down the page, and then pressing the button again.
Once files are transferred over to the computer, they’re easily emailed over the BGAN network.
The hand scanner pictured above is widely available on Amazon.com for about $60 USD and our experience with it has been outstanding.