Understanding Satellite Data | NZ

Before you enable satellite data on your device, it is important that you understand how mobile satellite data works. The information below explains more about mobile satellite data. This is only intended as a guide for how much data you might use, and the approximate amounts involved with certain online activities.

REMEMBER – using satellite data is generally slower and the cost is considerably higher than using normal mobile data.

What can I access?

Depending on the satellite terminal you are connecting to you can access:

  • Email
  • Search (Google, etc)
  • Browse the web
  • Outlook client
  • Webmail (Hotmail, Yahoo, Gmail, etc)
  • Street Directions (Google Maps)
  • Assisted GPS
  • Instant Messaging (WhatsApp, Skype, etc) – text and small photo (kB) only.
  • Social Networking (Facebook, Twitter) – text and small photo (Kb) only.

How much satellite data will I use?

As a guide, please see the approximate figures below:

  • Sending or receiving an email without attachment: Approx 50kB per email
  • Viewing a basic webpage: Approc 500kB per webpage loaded
  • Downloading a weather GRIB file: Approx 150kB per GRIB file
  • Social media chat (text only, no video and photo): Approx 10kB per message

How much will my data allowance get me?

As a guide, please see the approximate figures below:

Data Allowance
1000kB = 1MB

Emails Without


GRIB Files

Social Media
(Text Only)


40 Emails

4 Visits 13 GRIB Files 200 Chat Lines

2,000 Emails

200 Visits 666 GRIB Files 10,000 Chat Lines

10,000 Emails

1,000 Visits 3,333 GRIB Files 50,000 Chat Lines
1GB 20,000 Emails 2,000 Visits 6,666 GRIB Files 100,000 Chat Lines

How can I reduce my data costs?

Ask us about our Pulsar® data management system, an online self-service portal that allows you to monitor and manage your satellite data services that operate on the Pivotel network. Manage your service costs by configuring email and SMS usage alerts or control limits in near real-time, therefore mitigating bill shock. For more information on Pulsar click here.

Satellite Data Saving Tips

To reduce your data costs and improve your internet experience – try the following tips:

  • Turn off automatic updates on the device (laptop, tablet, smartphone) you are connecting to the satellite device
  • Avoid large downloads such as pictures or music while using satellite data
  • When emailing or messaging, reduce the size of the images to decrease the overall message size
  • Use mobile versions of websites and apps (eg Facebook, Twitter, etc) rather than desktop versions
  • Use web browsers that offer the option of text only browsing or use websites that convert into text only pages
  • Only use satellite data when you require access to data and switch off after use
If you experience any issues accessing data through your device please Call Customer Care on: 0508 882 448.
Categories: Billing